||This biographical article needs additional citations for verification. (August 2013)|
Atkinson signing books at the Edinburgh International Book Festival (August 2007)
|Born||1951 (age 62–63)
York, England, United Kingdom
|Alma mater||University of Dundee|
Kate Atkinson, MBE (born 1951) is an English writer.
Atkinson was born in York, the daughter of a shopkeeper. She studied English literature at the University of Dundee, gaining her master's degree in 1974. Atkinson subsequently studied for a doctorate in American literature, entitled "The post-modern American short story in its historical context". She has often spoken publicly that she failed at the viva (oral examination) stage. After leaving university, she took on a variety of jobs from home help to legal secretary and teacher.
Atkinson has been married twice, whilst a student to the father of her first daughter Eve, and subsequently to the father of her second daughter Helen.
Her first novel, Behind the Scenes at the Museum, won the 1995 Whitbread Book of the Year ahead of Salman Rushdie's The Moor's Last Sigh and Roy Jenkins's biography of William Ewart Gladstone. It went on to be a Sunday Times bestseller. Since then, she has published another five novels, one play, and one collection of short stories.
Her work is often celebrated[by whom?] for its wit, wisdom and subtle characterisation, and the surprising twists and plot turns. Some of her work has featured the former detective Jackson Brodie. She has frequently criticised the media's coverage of her work – when she won the Whitbread award, for example, it was the fact that she was a "single mother" who lived outside London that received the most attention.
In March 2010, Atkinson appeared at the York Literature Festival, giving a world-premier reading from an early chapter from her novel Started Early, Took My Dog (2010), which is set mainly in the English city of Leeds.
- Behind the Scenes at the Museum (1995) – winner of the 1995 Whitbread Prize
- Human Croquet (1997)
- Emotionally Weird (2000)
- Featuring Jackson Brodie (former police inspector, now private investigator):
- Life After Life (2013)
- A God in Ruins (2014)
- Abandonment (2000)
- Not the End of the World (2002)
Awards and honours
- 1995 Whitbread Awards (Book of the Year), Behind the Scenes at the Museum
- 2009 Crime Thriller Award for The CWA Gold Dagger: When Will There Be Good News? (nominated)
- 2009 British Book Awards, Richard and Judy Bookclub Winner, When Will There Be Good News?
- 2013 Costa Book Awards (Novel category), Life After Life
- 2014 Walter Scott Prize shortlist for Life After Life
- Brown, Helen (29 August 2004). "A writer's life: Kate Atkinson". Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 8 March 2014.
- "Ox-Tales". Oxfam. Retrieved 14 November 2010.
- The London Gazette: . 11 June 2011.
- "Kate Atkinson". Fantasticfiction.co.uk. Retrieved 14 November 2010.
- [dead link] Allen, Kate (7 September 2009). "Coben, Cole, Atkinson vie for crime awards". The Bookseller. Retrieved 7 September 2009.
- "Former winners recapture Costa prize". BBC News. 6 January 2014. Retrieved 6 January 2014.
- "Walter Scott Prize Shortlist 2014". Walter Scott Prize. 4 April 2014. Retrieved 27 May 2014.
- Ian Rankin No. 1 Magazine, Retrieved 24 February 2014
- Official website
- Kate Atkinson at British Council: Literature
- One Good Turn Reviews at Metacritic
- Kate Atkinson at the Internet Book List
- Kate Atkinson at the Internet Movie Database
- Kate Atkinson talking about One Good Turn at MeetTheAuthor.co.uk
- John Mullan talks to Kate Atkinson about Behind the Scenes at the Museum for The Guardian Book Club podcast