Claire Tomalin beat all comers, including her husband, novelist and playwright Michael Frayn, to take the £25,000 Whitbread Book of the Year Prize. Her winning book, Samuel Pepys: The Unequalled Self, is a biography of the famous 17th-century British diarist. Published in the autumn of 2002, it has proved a bestseller for Tomalin's British publisher, Viking Penguin, which rushed through a reprint in December. The book is published in the U.S. by Knopf. The finalists not married to the winner were poet Paul Farley (The Ice Age), children's writer Hilary McKay (Saffy's Angel) and debut novelist Norman Lebrecht (The Song of Names).
Volume 250 Issue 5 02/03/2003