The winners of the Tata Literature Live! Awards were announced at the end of the four-day-long literary festival, on November 19 in Mumbai.
The winners of the First Book Award, which recognises new talent in the Indian literary space for fiction as well as non-fiction, were Prayaag Akbar’s dystopian novel Leila and Pranay Lal’s natural history masterpiece Indica: A Deep Natural History of the Indian Subcontinent.
The Book of the Year Award for fiction was awarded to Easterine Kire’s novel Son of the Thundercloud that merges fiction and folklore. In the non-fiction category, Pankaj Mishra’s Age of Anger: A History of the Present, which seeks to answer why our world is consumed by fury and discontentment, was named Best Book of the Year.
Former Governor of the Reserve Bank of India YV Reddy’s ringside view of Indian economic policy, Advice and Dissent: My Life in Public Service was named Business Book of the Year.
One of the few literary awards in India to recognise a publishing house in addition to individual authors, the Tata Literature Live! Publisher of the Year award was given to Penguin Random House India, which published Pranay Lal’s Indica as well as some of the biggest books of the year, such as Arundhati Roy’s The Ministry of Utmost Happiness. Editor-in-chief Meru Gokhale looked back at their biggest hits of the year while expressing her delight at the win.
The Big Little Book Award, which was for a children’s author in Bengali this year, went to Nabaneeta Dev Sen.
In addition, acclaimed Indian playwright, film director, and writer Girish Karnad was awarded the Tata Literature Live! Lifetime Achievement Award for his “multifaceted and inspirational career” and his “extraordinary contribution to Indian literature”. “This award is a recognition of the great fortune that I’ve had, that I was there when Indian literature was taking shape,” Karnad said, while accepting the award.