Hilary Mantel's Wolf Hall and Barbara Kingsolver's The Lacuna are among six titles to make the shortlist for the Orange Prize for Fiction, an annual UK literary prize awarded to a female English-language writer of any nationality. The finalists were announced April 20 during a breakfast at the London Book Fair.
"This shortlist achieves the near impossible of combining literary merit with sheer readability," said chair of judges Daisy Goodwin.
"With a thriller, historical novels that reflect our world back to us, as well as a tragicomedy about post-9/11 America - there is something here to challenge, amuse and enthrall every kind of reader."
2010 Orange Prize shortlist:
The Very Thought of You by Rosie Alison
The Lacuna by Barbara Kingsolver
Black Water Rising by Attica Locke
Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel
A Gate at the Stairs by Lorrie Moore
The White Woman on the Green Bicycle by Monique Roffey
The winning author, to be announced in London on June 9, will receive £30,000 (€34 000).