Women’s Prize for Fiction announces 2024 Longlist

The Women’s Prize Trust – the UK charity which creates equitable opportunities for women in the world of books – today announces the longlist for the 2024 Women’s Prize for Fiction. Now in its 29th year and sponsored by Audible and Baileys, the Prize shines a spotlight on outstanding, ambitious, original fiction written in English by women from anywhere in the world.

The longlist

The 2024 longlist features eight debut novelists (Maya Binyam, Effie Black, Alicia Elliott, Kate Foster, Mirinae Lee, Chetna Maroo, Aube Rey Lescure and Pam Williams), four authors who have previously published one novel (V.V. Ganeshananthan, Isabella Hammad, Peace Adzo Medie, and Megan Nolan), alongside four writers who have multiple books to their name (Anne Enright, Kate Grenville, Claire Kilroy and Karen Lord). Kate Grenville, who won the Women’s Prize for Fiction in 2001 (The Idea of Perfection), sits alongside Anne Enright, the first Laureate for Irish Fiction, who was longlisted in 2008 (The Gathering) and 2020 (Actress) and shortlisted in 2012 (The Forgotten Waltz) and 2016 (The Green Road). V.V. Ganeshananthan was also longlisted in 2009 for her first novel (Love Marriage).

Out of the 16 longlisted authors, there are five British writers, three Americans, three Irish, one Barbadian, one South Korean, one Australian, one Ghanaian and one French/American. The longlist is globe-spanning, location-moving and time-hopping: we move from Korea’s turbulent history to sub-Saharan Africa, from Sri Lanka during the Civil War to rural New South Wales in the 19th Century. In one novel we are dropped deep into the contemporary tensions of the West Bank, in another we find ourselves in the midst of the Chinese economic boom. We are even immersed in the serve, volley, drive and shot of a squash court.

Independent publishers make a strong showing this year, with seven represented on the list. Époque, a small independent, and Gollancz, the established UK-based publisher of science fiction, fantasy and horror, both have titles longlisted for the first time, with Duckworth celebrating a second longlisting in two consecutive years. Legend Press and Pushkin Press both mark their third successful longlisting, whilst two other independents who have previously won the Prize also feature: Faber & Faber most recently with Demon Copperhead by Barbara Kingsolver in 2023 and Oneworld with An American Marriage by Tayari Jones in 2019.

The judges

This year, bestselling author and chair of the 2024 judging panel Monica Ali is joined by author Ayọb̀ ámi Adébáyọ; author and illustrator Laura Dockrill; actor Indira Varma; and presenter and author Anna Whitehouse.

Monica Ali says:

With the strength and vitality of contemporary women’s fiction very much in evidence, reading the entries for this year’s Women’s Prize for Fiction has been a joyful experience. Of course this made it all the more difficult to select the longlist, but after much lively discussion amongst the judges we are delighted with the 16 titles selected. Each one of these books is brilliant, original and utterly unputdownable. Collectively, they offer a wide array of compelling narratives from around the world, written with verve, wit, passion and compassion. They are books that will engage readers’ hearts and minds, they are filled with indelible characters, and they do what stories can do so powerfully: unsettle and disturb as well as surprise and delight.

These judges will narrow down this longlist of 16 books to a shortlist of six, which will be announced on 24 April 2024. The winner of the 2024 Women’s Prize for Fiction will be awarded on Thursday 13 June 2024 at the Women’s Prize Trust’s summer party in central London, along with the winner of the 2024 Women’s Prize for Non-Fiction. The winner will receive a cheque for £30,000, anonymously endowed, along with a limited-edition bronze statuette known as the ‘Bessie’, created and donated by the artist Grizel Niven.

More information can be found on the Women’s Prizes website here.

Get involved

If you work in a library or workplace and would like to promote the longlist, you can download a free digital pack from our shop.

What do you think of the 2024 longlisted titles? Which have you read and what will be added to your TBR pile? Add your comments below, or click any title above to leave a review.

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