BBC Scotland launches contest to find Scotland’s favourite novel

Ewen Bremner, Ewan McGregor and Robert Carlisle in Danny Boyles 1995 film of Irvine Welshs Trainspotting. Picture: Kobal Collection
Ewen Bremner, Ewan McGregor and Robert Carlisle in Danny Boyles 1995 film of Irvine Welshs Trainspotting. Picture: Kobal Collection
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A contest to find Scotland’s favourite novels is being launched by BBC Scotland today to encourage reading.

Readers are asked to choose their top ten from a list of 30 contenders selected by an expert panel, comprising a range of contemporary and classic favourites.

Muriel Sparks The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie was made into a film starring Maggie Smith. Picture: Kobal Collection

Muriel Sparks The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie was made into a film starring Maggie Smith. Picture: Kobal Collection

However, organisers said people could champion books not on the list through social media, such as Twitter. Authors must have been born or based in Scotland.

The list includes Scotland’s most famous authors, from Sir Walter Scott to John Buchan and Muriel Spark. Living writers include Ian Rankin, AL Kennedy, JK Rowling and Irvine Welsh.

Voting at bbc.co.uk/scotlandsfavouritebook ends on 26 August. The top ten will be revealed in a BBC Scotland programme in October.

The competition is part of the BBC’s #LovetoRead campaign, launched in May.

It is being run with the Scottish Book Trust, Edinburgh International Book Festival and Scottish Library and Information Council, which encourages online voting in libraries for readers without internet access.

The panel who drew up the list comprised Willy Maley, professor of Renaissance Studies (English Literature) at the University of Glasgow, Scottish Book Trust head of reader development Philippa Cochrane and Creative Scotland head of literature Jenny Niven.

A spokeswoman for the EIBF, where two-thirds of the living authors will appear this year, said: “Our audiences have a great knowledge of Scottish writing and I’m sure they will leap at the chance to vote for their favourites.”