BBD&P Awards hail enduring appeal of printed books

Richard Stuart-Turner
Friday, November 23, 2018

BPIF chief executive Charles Jarrold commended the enduring appeal of printed books at last night’s 2018 British Book Design & Production Awards (BBD&PA).

106 books made it onto the shortlist for the event, held at the Montcalm Marble Arch Hotel in London yesterday (22 November), and there were 19 winners.

That Book, created by Eszter & David and Hurtwood Press, first triumphed in the Digitally Printed Books category and later secured the title of Book of the Year. Judges said they were captivated by the attention to detail, and said it was “devoid of boundaries and designed with boundless imagination”.

Penguin Random House was a triple winner at the event, taking home awards for Best Jacket/Cover Design for The Handmaids Tale, Lifestyle Illustrated for Hawksmoor: Restaurants & Recipes, and Trade Illustrated for River Café 30.

Saoirse Suvari from the National College of Art & Design won Best Student Book for Kurdish Freedom Fighter, which judges described as “an incredibly personal piece of work”. Suvari was awarded a £500 cheque and the opportunity to complete an internship in the industry.

Addressing the crowd in his opening speech, Jarrold said: “Over the last few years, book publishing has been on a journey that has affected everyone directly involved in the sector – writers, photographers, creatives, publishers, printers and wider society.

“But despite seismic changes in the world of print, publishing and media, book publishing and production continues to go from strength to strength.

“In their 2017 yearbook, the Publishers Association reported that UK publishing grew yet again by a healthy 5%.

“Physical book sales continue to be really healthy – also up by 5% – and it’s really interesting that physical books represent 83% of the balance of sales between physical and eBooks and that that market share continues to grow, with eBooks – while they are great – declining in their share slightly.”

The event was hosted by Adam Kay, comedian and author of This is going to Hurt, which recounts his former career as a junior doctor. The Sunday Times bestseller has sold more than 700,000 copies and won numerous literary prizes.

The BBD&PAs exist to celebrate and treasure beautiful physical books and the craft that creates them. The theme this year was ‘Vivid’, to reflect the powerful feelings and strong, clear images that books can evoke.

The awards were run by the BPIF in association with BookMachine, Oxford Brookes University, The Bookseller and The Publishers Association. The full list of 2018 winners, as well as the shortlist, can be viewed at

Entries for the 2019 BBDPAs will open in April.

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