Professor Rebecca Stott, from UEA’s school of Literature, Drama and Creative Writing (LDC), has been shortlisted for the Costa Book Awards with her book In the Days of Rain: A Daughter, A Father, a Cult. It is one of four shortlisted for the Costa Biography category.

Rebecca Stott is a professor of literature and creative writing, as well as a novelist, broadcaster, and non-fiction writer.

She has written a number of critically acclaimed books, and works across different disciplines including history, literature, and the history of science.

In the Days of Rain is Stott’s personal story of growing up in a cult in 1970s Brighton, and her family’s story of breaking from it. The judges of the Costa Book Award have described it as “a vivid and truly unforgettable family story of life in a cult”.

Stott writes: “At university when I made new friends and confidantes, I couldn’t explain how I’d become a teenage mother, or shoplifted books for years, or why I was afraid of the dark and had a compulsion to rescue people, without explaining about the Brethren or the God they made for us, and the Rapture they told us was coming. But then I couldn’t really begin to talk about the Brethren without explaining about my father.”

The Costa Book Awards run annually and judge books in five categories – First Novel, Novel, Biography, Poetry, and Children’s Book – that have been released throughout the year.

The category winners will be announced on January 2, at a ceremony in London. Then, on January 30, one of the five winners will have their work selected as the Costa Book of the Year.