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Presitigious British Romance Novelist Award Long List Nominees and Judging Panel...

The long list of 22 books have been released for the coveted "Romance Novel of the Year 2009" given out annually by the Romantic Novelists' Association.  156 books were submitted.  The 22 books will be whittled down to a short list on January 13, 2009.  A panel of 80 readers from all over the country, from the ages of 20 to 70, read the 156 books and select the longlist.  A special panel of RNA members reduces the list to 6 and then the shortlist is given to 3 judges.  This year, the 3 judges are Alice O'Keeffe, Books Editor at Bookseller, Fanny Blake, Books Editor of Woman & Home, and Peter Crawshaw who runs

I would love to see something like this from the RWA, a reader supported annual book of the year.  That's an award I could really get behind.

Via Press Release .

Jane Litte is the founder of Dear Author, a lawyer, and a lover of pencil skirts. She self publishes NA and contemporaries (and publishes with Berkley and Montlake) and spends her downtime reading romances and writing about them. Her TBR pile is much larger than the one shown in the picture and not as pretty. You can reach Jane by email at jane @ dearauthor dot com


  1. SarahT
    Dec 18, 2008 @ 11:18:47

    Forgive me if I’m wrong, but I think that RWA used to have something like this whereby its members could nominate their favourite book of the year. Granted the members of RWA are all authors themselves but it gave the general membership a chance to vote, as opposed to the RITAs.

  2. Jane
    Dec 18, 2008 @ 12:18:49

    @SarahT They did have a book of the year award and it was deleted (wrong word for it but brain is dead right now).

  3. Tae
    Dec 19, 2008 @ 06:46:20

    hrm.. I’ve not read a single author on the list

  4. Susanna Kearsley
    Dec 19, 2008 @ 09:11:40

    @Jane: Discontinued? Is that the word you wanted?

    Anyhow, I agree with you, Jane — the thing that makes this award so special is that it’s driven by readers. Not only do the readers’ scores determine the longlist, but they’re also factored in to the choice of the shortlist, since it’s the combined high scores of both the public readers and the RNA panel that puts a book onto the shortlist, not the scores of the panel alone.

    The whole process is detailed here:

    I was incredibly thrilled and honoured to be told I’d made the longlist (especially because it means I now get to go to a champagne breakfast in London in January!) It’s a great Christmas present.

    And Tae, you probably know of some of the authors on the list, even if you haven’t read them…Cecelia Ahern wrote P.S. I Love You (as in the Gerard Butler movie), and Sophie Kinsella writes the Shopaholic books, among other things.

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