2019 International DUBLIN Literary Award announced

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10 Irish novels are among 141 titles nominated by libraries worldwide for the €100,000 International DUBLIN Literary Award, the world’s most valuable annual literary prize for a single work of fiction published in English.  Nominations include 39 novels in translation with works by authors from 41 countries in Africa, Europe, Asia, the US & Canada, South America and Australia & New Zealand.

Organised by Dublin City Council, the 2019 Award was launched today, 19th November, by Lord Mayor, Nial Ring, Patron of the Award, who commended the Award for its promotion of excellence in world literature as well as for the opportunity to promote Irish writing internationally.  ‘Dublin is a UNESCO City of Literature and cultural tourism is a vital part of the City’s economy’ he said: ‘this prestigious Award enhances the City’s worldwide reputation as a literary destination’.

Mike McCormack, on winning the 2018 prize in June commented:

 ‘It speaks something generous,  eloquent and enquiring that Dublin City Council, for so many years have put their resources, their  weight, all their expertise behind this prize, it has huge international standing, it has a unique reach and a unique generosity and long may it live, it’s one of the shining jewels in this country’s crown’.

 

The Irish titles nominated for 2019 are:  

  • Mrs Osmond by John Banville
  • A Line Made by Walking  by Sara Baume
  • The Heart’s Invisible Furies  by John Boyne
  • Acts of Allegiance  by Peter Cunningham
  • Smile  by Roddy Doyle
  • The Blood Miracles  by Lisa McInerney
  • Midwinter Break  by Bernard MacLaverty
  • Ithaca by Alan McMonagle
  • The Dead House by Billy O’Callaghan
  • Conversations With Friends by Sally Rooney

 

2019 Collage

 

The International DUBLIN Literary Award is managed by Dublin City Council’s library service. Brendan Teeling, Acting Dublin City Librarian, announced that the 141 books eligible for the 2019 award were nominated by libraries in 115 cities and 41 countries worldwide; noting that 39 are titles in translation, spanning 16 languages and 48 are first novels.

Speaking of the global interest in the Award, the City Librarian remarked ‘This great prize affirms Dublin’s commitment to international writers and translators, to literature and creativity. Through this award Dublin, a UNESCO City of Literature, brings the worldwide community of readers together to read the works of contemporary writers from all corners of the world’.

Other novels nominated for the 2019 Award include 2017 Costa Novel Award winner Reservoir 13 by Jon McGregor, a previous winner of the award in 2012 for Even the Dogs; 2017 Costa First Novel Award winner Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman; In the Distance by Hernan Díaz, finalist of the 2018 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, and The Life to Come by Michelle de Kretser, winner of the 2018 Miles Franklin Award.

Among the 39 translated books are novels originally published in Danish, Estonian, Finnish, Korean, Māori, Serbian and Slovene. Translated authors include Fredrik Backman, Jean Echenoz, Peter Stamm, Maria Duenas, Zoran Zivkovic and Han Yujoo.

The book that received most nominations this year is Exit West by Mohsin Hamid, chosen by 9 libraries in Barbados, Belgium, Canada, Germany, Spain and the USA.

The 2019 Judging Panel comprises Éilís Ní Dhuibhne , bi-lingual Irish novelist and story writer; Martin Middeke, Professor of English at the University of Augsburg, Germany; Hans Christian Oeser, translator, editor and travel writer; Evie Wyld, novelist and bookseller, and Ge Yan, author and Ph.D candidate in Comparative Literature. The non-voting Chairperson is Eugene R. Sullivan.

All of the novels nominated for the Award are available for readers to borrow from Dublin’s public libraries. The full list of 141 titles is available on www.dublinliteraryaward.ie.  The shortlist will be published on 4th April 2019and the Lord Mayor will announce the winner on 12th June 2019. 

The International DUBLIN Literary Award is a Dublin City Council initiative.

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