I don't really think the BSFA covered itself in glory that year. The other shortlisted novels were Cat Karina, by Michael Coney; Golden Witchbreed, by Mary Gentle; Helliconia Summer, by Brian Aldiss; and The Citadel of the Autarch, by Gene Wolfe. I haven't read Cat Karina; frankly I think the other three are all better than the rather heavy-handed satire of Tik-Tok, and while I would have voted for Aldiss I think the BSFA award would have most respectably gone to Wolfe. The Hugo and Nebula for Best Novel that year both went to Startide Rising. (The BSFA short form award went to Malcolm Edwards' one and only published fiction, "After-Images".)
This came to the top of my TBR pile because it won the BSFA award for 1983. The next two winners of that award were Mythago Wood by Robert Holdstock and Helliconia Winter by Brian Aldiss, both of which I have reviewed here not too long ago. So my next from that particular list will be The Ragged Astronauts by Bob Shaw.