Barbara Kingsolver and Darryl Pinckney are the winners of this year’s James Tait Black Memorial Prizes, given annually by the University of Edinburgh to the best work of fiction and the best biography of the year.

Kingsolver took home the fiction award for Demon Copperhead, which was inspired by Charles Dickens’ David Copperfield. In a starred review, a Kirkus critic called the novel, which follows the son of a single mother struggling with loss, addiction, and poverty in Virginia, “an angry, powerful book seething with love and outrage for a community too often stereotyped or ignored.”

Kingsolver’s novel previously won the Pulitzer Prize and the Women’s Prize. James Tait Black Prize judge Benjamin Bateman called it “a searing indictment of corporate greed, a sensitive exploration of a community too often written off, and a hopeful endorsement of the healing power of art.”

Pinckney was named the winner of the biography award for his memoir Come Back in September: A Literary Education on West Sixty-Seventh Street, Manhattan. The book tells the story of Pinckney’s time at Columbia University, where he studied with critic and author Elizabeth Hardwick. A Kirkus critic gave the book a starred review, calling it “an essential document of literary history evoking an era of hope, youth, wisdom, and tragedy.”

Judge Simon Cooke said Pinckney’s book “strikes many notes, fusing dazzling conversational wit and poised elegy, and the sentences are so supple, surprising, and graceful—it’s a masterclass in tonal integrity.”

The James Tait Black Prizes were first awarded in 1919, making them Britain’s oldest literary prizes. Previous winners have included E.M. Forster’s A Passage to India; Antonia Fraser’s Mary, Queen of Scots; Zadie Smith’s White Teeth; and Hermione Lee’s Penelope Fitzgerald: A Life.

Michael Schaub, a journalist and regular contributor to NPR, lives near Austin, Texas.