Alice O’Keeffe, Books Editor at The Bookseller, said: “Our shortlists this year took the judges from Georgian London to the Second World War to contemporary New York. There are books from exciting fresh voices at the very start of their career, contrasted with books from with well-established brand authors at the top of their game. These are the books that sum up 2018 but which, we think, will be read for years to come.”
The Book of Science and Antiquities
"It would be a crime to give away anything more, but the end of this beautiful novel made me cry. Jones writes with intelligence and a lively wit, but there’s more — a warmth that forces you to care about these people as if you had met them...."
— The Times
3 out of 5
Despite contemporary touches - pithy one-liners like "olive oil is so passe" - at many points the stereotypes (the painful perfect mums, snarky slummy mummies and checked-out dads) are just too tired to revive. This is a shame because, as the year unfolds, buried in tiresome PTA meetings - as interesting to read about as they are to attend - and much abusing of the All Caps, Sims explores some prickly and highly-relevant themes...Why Mummy Swears ultimately falls between snark and heart, never quite recreating the pitch dark humour of her original blog, nor does it feel rounded enough to make us really care all that much what happens to mummy, daddy and the "moppets".