UK book chain starts annual debut authors hot list

LONDON (Reuters) - British booksellers Waterstone’s announced its first annual list of 11 debut novelists expected to achieve critical and commercial success.

A woman walks past a Waterstone's book shop in London January 14, 2010. REUTERS/Suzanne Plunkett

“We aspire to make the Waterstone’s 11 one of the first major fixtures of the literary calendar, annually introducing our squad of authors en masse to the media, and supporting their titles as they are published,” Waterstone’s managing director Dominic Myer said.

The 11 include Cornell University lecturer Téa Obreht, whose book talks of tigers and the Balkans, former Reuters correspondent Sophie Hardach writing about forced marriages, actress Sarah Winman on innocence and Stephen Kelman -- who made British news last year when his novel “Pigeon English” was at the center of a 12-way bidding war.

The full list of the Waterstone’s 11 is:

“City of Bohane” by Kevin Barry

“The Free World” by David Bezmozgis

“The Registrar’s Manual for Detecting Forced Marriages” by

Sophie Hardach

“22 Britannia Road” by Amanda Hodgkinson

“Chinaman” by Shehan Karunatilaka

“Pigeon English” by Stephen Kelman

“The Coincidence Engine” by Sam Leith

“The Tiger’s Wife” by Téa Obreht

“The Sentimentalists” by Johanna Skibsrud

“The Collaborator” by Mirza Waheed

“When God Was a Rabbit” by Sarah Winman

Reporting by Paul Casciato; editing by Steve Addison