Second time around for author as shortlist is selected for £20,000 Kindle Storyteller Award 2022

Amazon has revealed the five books on the shortlist for this year’s £20,000 Kindle Storyteller Award after picking the titles from more than 5,000 entries.

One of the authors — J D Kirk — is among the finalists for the second consecutive year. The five books are all novels and there are two thrillers, two romances, and one historical saga. Three of the titles are part of a series by their respective authors.

The five books on the Kindle Storyteller Award 2022 shortlist are:

  • City of Scars — DCI Logan Crime Thrillers, Book 14, by J D Kirk
  • King of War — Book Four in the Viking Blood and Blade Saga, by Peter Gibbons
  • It Started With A Kiss — romance set in Cornwall, by Clare Lydon
  • Midsummer House — Applemore, Book 3, romance set in the Scottish Highlands, by Rachael Lucas
  • The Woman in Room 19 — a psychological thriller, by Ann Girdharry

The award for KDP self-published writers was started in 2017 and this is the sixth year of the contest. Readers play a part in helping to draw up the shortlist as customer feedback, number of reads through Kindle Unlimited and sales are some of the criteria taken into consideration before the titles are presented to a panel of judges.  

Last year, J D Kirk was on the final shortlist with An Isolated Incident, the 11th book in his DCI Logan series. He is the first author to appear as a finalist twice.

J D Kirk’s real name is Barry Hutchison, and he is the author of more than 140 children’s books plus the adult Space Team series of humorous science fiction, before taking on the J D Kirk moniker and moving into crime fiction with the hugely successful DCI Logan series. The shortlisted book isn’t his newest novel as Here Lie The Dead, the 15th book in the Logan series, has just been released and is already riding high in the best-seller charts.

Adam Kay, best-selling author of the medical memoir This is Going to Hurt, is one of the judges on this year’s award panel, together with last year’s winner Rachel McLean; best-selling author Mel Sherratt; Alliance of Independent Authors member manager Melissa Addey; Darren Hardy, author and editorial programmes manager at Amazon UK; and Jen Barrett, of Amazon Books editorial. 

The smart money should be on J D Kirk to pick up the 20-grand prize. His book, City of Scars, must have stormed its way on to the shortlist through reader feedback as it came out in May this year and has amassed an incredible 11,843 customer ratings already, at very close to a 5-star average. However, his shortlisted book from 2021 has nearly 14,000 glowing reviews, so maybe that’s no real indication of how the judges will go, and, let’s face it, with those sales he doesn’t really need the money.

My tip for this year’s Storyteller award is Peter Gibbons’ Viking saga, King of War, purely on the grounds that I scanned through the samples of all the shortlist and that was the one that really drew me in and kept me reading, and actually made me borrow the first book in the series. My track record’s not up to much though, just one correct forecast in the last five years.

The winner will be announced on October 24.