The Baillie Gifford Prize 25th Anniversary


2023 is set to be a monumental year for The Baillie Gifford Prize as it celebrates its 25th anniversary! Since 1999, the prize has honored the very best in non-fiction and has been home to many unforgettable authors and books.

To celebrate, a special panel of judges has been assembled to read all the previous winning books and decide on a Winner of Winners. The panel consists of the editor of The New Statesman, Jason Cowley, and former judges Shahidha Bari, Sarah Churchwell, and Frances Wilson. The winner will be announced on 27 April at a ceremony at the National Museum of Scotland in Edinburgh.

The anniversary will also be marked by a special documentary – All The Best Stories Are True – which explores the very best in non-fiction writing over the past 25 years. From nail-biting moments to life-changing stories, the documentary uncovers how the prize started out as the non-fiction rival to the Booker, and what the next 25 years hold for readers and writers in a world now steeped in ‘fake news’. It will be available to watch on the Baillie Gifford Prize YouTube channel this February.

Waterstones will also be celebrating the 25th anniversary with displays of all 24 previous winners, paying tribute to the Baillie Gifford Prize’s history and influence as the biggest UK-based non-fiction book prize.

The 24 books in contention are:


Author/translator  Title (Imprint) Year of win

Antony Beevor


Stalingrad (Viking, Penguin Random House)




David Cairns


Berlioz: Servitude and Greatness 1832-1869 (Allen Lane, Penguin Random House UK)




Michael Burleigh


The Third Reich: A New History (Macmillan, Pan Macmillan)




Margaret Macmillan


Peacemakers: Six Months That Changed The World (John Murray Press, Hachette)




T.J. Binyon


Pushkin: A Biography (HarperCollins)




Anna Funder


Stasiland: Stories from Behind the Berlin Wall (Granta)




Jonathan Coe


Like a Fiery Elephant: The Story of B.S. Johnson (Picador, Pan Macmillan)




James Shapiro


1599: A Year in the Life of William Shakespeare (Faber & Faber)




Rajiv Chandrasekaran


Imperial Life in the Emerald City: Inside Iraq’s Green Zone (Bloomsbury)




Kate Summerscale


The Suspicions of Mr Whicher, Or, The Murder at Road Hill House (Bloomsbury)




Philip Hoare


Leviathan, or the Whale (4th Estate, HarperCollins)




Barbara Demick


Nothing to Envy: Real Lives in North Korea (Granta)




Frank Dikötter


Mao’s Great Famine: The History of China’s Most Devastating Catastrophe, 1958-1962 (Bloomsbury)




Wade Davis


Into the Silence: The Great War, Mallory and the Conquest of Everest (The Bodley Head, Vintage, Penguin Random House UK)




Lucy Hughes-Hallett


The Pike: Gabriele d’Annunzio, Poet, Seducer and Preacher of War (4th Estate, HarperCollins)




Helen Macdonald


H is for Hawk (Jonathan Cape, Penguin Random House)




Steve Silberman


NeuroTribes: The Legacy of Autism and How to Think Smarter About People Who Think Differently (Allen and Unwin)




Philippe Sands


East West Street: on the origins of genocide and crimes against humanity (Weidenfeld & Nicholson, The Orion Publishing Group)




David France


How to Survive a Plague: The Inside Story of How Citizens and Science Tamed AIDS (Picador, Pan Macmillan)




Serhii Plokhy


Chernobyl: History of a Tragedy (Allen Lane, Penguin Random House UK)




Hallie Rubenhold


The Five: The Untold Lives of the Women Killed by Jack the Ripper (Doubleday, Penguin Random House UK)




Craig Brown


One Two Three Four: The Beatles in Time (4th Estate, HarperCollins)




Patrick Radden Keefe


Empire of Pain: The Secret History of the Sackler Dynasty (Doubleday, Penguin Random House UK)




Katherine Rundell


Super Infinite: The Transformations of John Donne (Faber & Faber)




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