The book tells the incredible story of Witold Pilecki, a Polish resistance fighter who volunteered to be imprisoned in the Nazi Auschwitz death camp in order to send out reports about the atrocities committed by the Germans during World War II.
After escaping from Auschwitz he fought in the 1944 Warsaw Uprising. Accused of spying for the West by Poland’s post-war communist regime, he was executed in 1948.
It was only after the collapse of communism, in 1990, that Pilecki was rehabilitated and honoured, in 2008, with the White Eagle, the highest Polish state distinction.
Fairweather’s biography, which was published in the US and UK as well as in a Polish translation earlier this year, has received rave reviews from critics.
One of the UK's most prestigious and popular literary prizes, the Costa Book Awards are given out annually in five categories: First Novel, Novel, Biography, Poetry and Children’s Book.
The winners in each of the categories are to be announced on January 6, and the winner of the overall Costa Book of the Year award on January 28.