For the first time in the prize’s 10-year history, women dominate the shortlists, with 13 female authors –
including Gaia Vincent, Katherine Rundell, Keggie Carew, Kiran Millwood Hargrave and M.G. Leonard – out of the 19 shortlisted.
11 of the 18 shortlisted books are from independent publishers, with Walker Books recognised for three titles, accounting for half of the Children’s Prize shortlist.
Established nature writers, including 2020 winner Dara McAnulty and 2017 shortlistee Stephen Moss, are shortlisted alongside acclaimed new voices Amanda Thomson, Sarah Langford and Elizabeth-Jane Burnett.
While confronting the reality of a world in crisis – from extreme weather to food insecurity, polluted oceans, and endangered species – and a clarion call for urgent action, the shortlisted books also offer solace and optimism, as well as radical solutions to heal our planet and ourselves through our connection with nature.
Authors on the Conservation shortlist were praised by judges for their ‘positive energy’ in exploring many of our deepest challenges as they offer pragmatic solutions for rewilding oceans and forests, reimagining our habitats and rethinking our relationship with nature.
The shortlistees come from a wide range of backgrounds both within and outside of environmental engagement; from TV presenters and charity workers to poets and visual artists, including a former criminal barrister, a comedian, and two husband-and-wife duos.