Both books were withdrawn from The Kitschies judging at an early stage due to a close relationship between the judge(s) and the author(s) (e.g. a member of the judging panel is in the acknowledgements). This, in a word, sucks.
However, we're a relatively young award and we need to err on the side of being neurotic. Our purpose is to promote transparency and debate and we'd rather do that without becoming the objects of the discussion. We appreciate how considerate the authors and the publishers have been of the situation.
That said, these are two phenomenal books.
When we reviewed The Mall earlier this year, we called it "brilliant" and "a deadly serious novel about what human beings can (and will) do when they're truly desperate". The full review is here. We encourage everyone to pick up this dark and (very) disturbing novel of consumerism, class and anti-heroism from this amazing debut team.
In June, when we reviewed Savage City, our review was all praise and no summary - an unusual precaution, but the book was four years in the making and didn't deserve to be spoiled. (It still doesn't.) We asked readers to "trust us on this one" and concluded that "Savage City is beautiful, heart-breaking, uplifting, invigorating, inescapable and ceaselessly, relentlessly, wonderfully surprising". The full review is here.
We strongly encourage readers and judges to consider these two books for other awards.