BBC News Ukraine adds Essays to its Book of the Year accolade

By Svitlana  Pyrkalo

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BBC Ukrainian announces the start of the 2017 Book of the Year awards

A new nomination has been added to the BBC News Ukraine Book of the Year accolade.  In addition to the best works of fiction in the Ukrainian language – BBC Book of the Year (Книга року BBC) and BBC Children’s Book of the Year (Дитяча Книга року BBC), awarded in partnership with the Cultural Programme of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) – the BBC also will award in the category BBC Book of the Year – Essays. 

Following a fourteen-year-old tradition, the annual literary awards were launched at the Book Fair and Literary Festival in Lviv, where the subject of the BBC’s round-table discussion was “Social-media entries, essays and literature: how one morphs into the other”.

BBC News Ukraine editor, Nina Kuryata, comments:  “Recently we have seen an emergence of a plethora of high-quality literary essays which occupy a special place between journalism and literature. We decided to create a special awards category so we can recognise excellence in this creative writing.”

EBRD cultural advisor, Svitlana Pyrkalo, adds: “The BBC News Ukraine Book of the Year is growing together with Ukrainian literature, and there are plenty of amazing new books for adults and children published every year to be considered. Admitting works translated from other languages of Ukraine brought the multilingual Ukrainian literature together. We are now looking forward to the books in the new category of literary essays.”

The BBC Book of the Year awards in three categories, which also consider translations of books by Ukrainian authors writing in all languages of Ukraine, will be judged by:    

  • Vira Ageyeva, professor, Ukraine National University “Kiev-Mohyla Academy”
  • Olga Gerasymiuk, journalist, member of Ukraine National Council for TV and Radio Broadcasting
  • Taras Lyuty, philosopher, writer
  • Svitlana Pyrkalo, EBRD cultural advisor
  • Marta Shokalo, BBC Ukrainian desk editor, awards coordinator
  • Vitaliy Zhezhera, writer, journalist. 

The winning author in each category will be awarded a Ukrainian hryvnya equivalent of £1,000.  The publishers of the BBC Book of the Year, BBC Children’s Book of the Year and BBC Book of the Year – Essays will have the right to use the logos of the BBC Ukrainian book awards on subsequent editions.

Publishers can submit up to three books in each category, and up to two new books by previous winners.  Submitted books must be in the Ukrainian language (original works or translations), published within the last 12 months.  For detailed Terms and Conditions and Privacy Notice, go to  The publishers can nominate entries between 21 September and 5 October 2018.  The readers can send their reviews between 15 October and 3 December 2018.

The longlists in each category are selected by the BBC Ukrainian team.  The panel selects shortlists and winners.

The deadline for nominations is Friday 5 October 2018.  The winners will be announced on Friday 14 December 2018.

BBC Book of the Year 2017 winners were: “The Land of the Lost, or The Little Terrible Tales” (“Земля загублених, або маленькі страшні казки”) by Kateryna Kalytko (Book of the Year) and “Comp and Company” (“Комп і компанія”) by Anna Korshunova (Children’s Book of the Year).

The BBC Book of the Year awards’ partnership with the Cultural Programme of the EBRD started in 2012 when BBC Children’s Book of the Year category was added to the accolade.

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