The Kindle Storyteller Award - a £20,000 literary prize celebrating exceptional writing from independent authors who publish in any genre - has announced the winning book for 2022 as King of War by Peter Gibbons.

The award was announced this evening by bestselling author and this year’s celebrity judge Adam Kay, at a ceremony that took place in the Houses of Parliament sponsored by Julian Knight MP, Chair of the House of Commons Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee.

King of War is the fourth book in Gibbons’ popular Viking Blood and Blade Saga, a Viking historical fiction series which began with Peter Gibbons' debut novel Viking Blood and Blade. The book follows Hundr, a Northman, as he navigates King Harald Fairhair’s war, hunts for a godly sword, survives brutal attacks and fights a vicious and deadly enemy, Black Gorm the Berserker.

Shortlisted authors Ann Girdharry, Clare Lydon, Peter Gibbons, JD Kirk and Rachael Lucas (left - right) with celebrity judge Adam Kay at the Awards ceremony.

Making dreams a reality 

In addition to the £20,000 prize money, Peter will receive a marketing campaign to support the book on alongside a bespoke gold Kindle cover, which was presented this evening. Originally from Warrington, Peter now lives in Kildare, Ireland, with his family. Despite always having ambitions of becoming an author, he only began writing books when the pandemic forced him to spend more time at home and discovered Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) as a way to self-publish his novels.

Peter still balances writing with his career as a financial services worker and has found a routine of getting up early in the morning before his three kids to write every day before work, and in just over a year has published four books.

Kindle Storyteller Awards-10
Peter Gibbons, the 2022 winner of Amazon’s Kindle Storyteller Award 

“I am absolutely delighted and honoured to have won this year's award,” said Peter. “I have always dreamed of becoming an author and I would like to thank Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing for opening the door and making that ambition a possibility. KDP allows everybody with a dream to publish their work for readers, and stories which otherwise would remain hidden in desk drawers or locked in our imaginations can find their way to kindle ereaders and bedside tables across the world.”

The judge’s comments 

The 2022 judging panel included guest judge and bestselling author Adam Kay, last year’s Kindle Storyteller winner Rachel McLean, best-selling author Mel Sherratt and Organisation Member Manager for Alliance of Independent Authors (ALLi) Melissa Addey, Amazon UK’s Author and Editorial Programmes Manager Darren Hardy and Jen Barrett, Amazon Books Editorial.

Their comments on King of War commended its “gripping” plot and narrative, noting that they were “instantly taken in by the action-packed plot and sensitively drawn characters”, even without the context of the previous books in the series. Ultimately, King of War “stood out as the book that captured the judges attention and stayed with them long after finishing, with many commenting that they are eager to read the next instalment.”

The Kindle Storyteller Award is in its sixth year in the UK and was established to recognise newly published work in the English language across any genre. The Award was open to any work in the English language published on Kindle Direct Publishing between May 1st and August 31st, 2022.

Darren Hardy, Author and Editorial Programmes Manager at Amazon UK, who chaired the judging panel, said: “Submissions were incredibly strong again this year, and it was a delight to delve into the shortlisted books - from sapphic romance novels to tight suspenseful thrillers and of course, Peter’s Viking adventure. King of War had me hooked from the beginning, and I’m looking forward to following the Viking Blood and Blade Saga as it continues. It’s incredible to see such talent being supported by Kindle Direct Publishing, where authors take control of their publishing, deciding when and how they publish their books and earning great royalties on their sales.”

Find out more about the Kindle Storyteller Award and read more about King of War by Peter Gibbons and the shortlisted books.