March 5, 2020

‘Publishing event of the decade?’

Publication day is finally here! Hilary Mantel’s eagerly awaited novel, The Mirror & the Light, is now in bookshops and we couldn’t be more thrilled that readers around the world now get to enjoy the final instalment of the double-Booker winning Wolf Hall trilogy.

In a move that brought anticipation and excitement for the book to fever pitch, the cover of The Mirror & the Light was projected onto The Tower of London last night, perhaps fulfilling James Daunt’s prediction that this would be the publishing event of the decade.

March 3, 2020

Maggie O’Farrell and Hilary Mantel longlisted for the Women’s Prize for Fiction 2020

We are delighted to see two A.M. Heath authors, Maggie O’Farrell and Hilary Mantel, on the longlist for the Women’s Prize for Fiction for 2020. Maggie O’Farrell’s eighth novel, Hamnet, has garnered brilliant pre-publication praise and will be published by Tinder Press at the end of March. Hilary Mantel’s The Mirror & the Light, published by 4th Estate in March 2020, is the long-awaited final instalment in the twice-Booker-winning Wolf Hall trilogy.

Congratulations and good luck to Hilary and Maggie!

Lorna Cook wins the Katie Fforde Debut Romantic Novel Award

Lorna Cook has won the Katie Fforde Debut Romantic Novel Award for The Forgotten Village (Avon) at the Romantic Novelists’ Association Awards, the UK’s only national literary prizes that recognise excellence in the genre of romantic fiction. The awards were hosted by Jenny Eclair, and author Milly Johnson collected the RNA Outstanding Achievement Award.

The Forgotten Village is an atmospheric, gripping love story set during the Second World War, when the village of Tyneham is requisitioned by the British army. On the night before the villagers have to leave, a terrible act causes three of them to disappear together, while in the present day, Melissa discovers a strange photograph of a woman who once lived in the big house in the village and determines to find out what happened to her. The book previously won the RNA’s Joan Hessayon Award for New Writers.

Congratulations, Lorna!

August 5, 2019

The Joan Aiken Future Classics Prize 2019 – Our Winner

We’re delighted to announce that our winner is Lucy Steeds and The Map of Lost Lands. Many congratulations, Lucy!

Julia says: Our shortlist gave us clever concepts, adventure, brave children and wonderful other worlds. Lucy’s The Map of Lost Lands is whimsical, funny, warm and surprising, about a girl finding her disappeared homeland. It’s got pace, originality and confidence. I love it.

Lizza says: Once you have immersed yourself in the world of a book it stays with you – as Joan Aiken said, ‘once a story is written it goes on happening.’ All of our shortlisted writers created their own powerful worlds, and having spent time in them, it was very difficult to choose just one. So thank you to all of you for sharing them, and to everyone else who took part – keep on writing!

Thank you so much to our shortlisted authors, and everyone who entered. We loved reading your work, and so appreciate your contribution.

July 29, 2019

The Joan Aiken Future Classics Prize 2019 – The Shortlist

After considering over 400 submissions, we’ve agreed on our shortlist for the Joan Aiken Future Classics Prize 2019.

Says Julia: The response was brilliant. As ever, it was such a fun process, there’s so much talent out there. This year’s shortlist is packed with great concepts and heart, voice and freshness. Lizza and I will spend the next week or so working out our winner. It will not be easy.

Says Lizza: It is fascinating to see how new writers have been influenced by Joan Aiken’s books – either in their use of locations, or imaginary worlds, or in descriptions of the special relationships formed by friends in difficult situations. Our shortlist shows some real talent – it’s just tantalising not to have seen how all the stories end!


Fiona Longmuir – The Museum of Emily

Pippa Lewis – The Glass Butterfly

Andrea Fautley – Frost Spell

Lucy Steeds – The Map of Lost Lands

Louisa Cowell – The Second Snowfall

Thank you to everyone who entered. If you haven’t been shortlisted, we may well be back in 2021, so please try again. You all made it a great competition.

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