Kenechi Udogu has won Faber’s £15,000 Imagined Futures Prize for her YA science fiction story “Augmented”.
As reported by The Bookseller, Udogu said she is extremely grateful to the judges for seeing something special in “Augmented” and selecting it as the first prize winner for this very much-needed competition for YA environmental science fiction.
“Much like mine, Akaego’s story is one of perseverance, friendship and hope.”
In “Augmented” the protagonist Akaego fights to prevent being weaponised by a corrupt regime after she discovers that her rare vocal ability to accelerate plant growth can also wipe them out.
Leah Thaxton, publisher, and Natasha Brown, project editor, snapped up rights from John Baker at Bell Lomax Moreton.
Second prize, an £8,000 advance and worldwide publishing contract, was awarded to Kathryn Clark for “Things I Learned While I Was Dead”, in which a girl wakes up in the future to a world that looks completely unfamiliar.
Third prize, a £5,000 advance and worldwide publishing contract, was awarded to Sally Gales for the rich and exciting “iNSiDE”. This story follows Naya, who has befriended the one species that is out of bounds to humans and is now on the run—but suddenly it looks like the collapsing world may need their help after all.
Thaxton and Brown acquired the rights for both directly from the authors.
The prize was judged by actor Jamie Bamber, head book buyer at Forbidden Planet Laura Dodd, and Professor of Political Thought and International Relations Duncan Bell. The in-house Faber judges included Thaxton and Brown and international sales manager Viki Cheung.