The shortlist for 2019's International Dublin Literary award has just been announced and it includes two Irish authors! The award is for novels written in English or translated to English. As well as the entries form Ireland this year's shortlist of ten includes books from France, Pakistan, the UK and the USA.The International DUBLIN Literary Award is proudly sponsored by Dublin City Council and managed by Dublin City Libraries. The award is worth €100,000 to the winner. If the book has been translated the author receives €75,000 and the translator received €25,000. The two Irish novels are Conversations with Friends by Sally Rooney and Midwinter Break by Bernard MacLaverty. The complete list of shortlisted titles are:Compass by Mathias Énard (French) Translated from French by Charlotte Mandell. Nominated by Paris, France and Kecskemét, Hungary.Borrow a copy from the library History of Wolves by Emily Fridlund (American). Nominated by Zurich, Switzerland and Stamford, USA.Borrow a copy from the library Exit West by Mohsin Hamid (Pakistani / British). Nominated by Bridgetown, Barbados; Brussels, Belgium; Halifax and Toronto, Canada; Dusseldorf, Germany; Barcelona, Spain; Houston, Los Angeles, Cincinnati, San Diego and Pittsburgh, USA.Borrow a copy from the library | Borrow an ebook Midwinter Break by Bernard MacLaverty (Northern Ireland). Nominated by Newcastle and London, UK; Galway, Ireland; Bern, Switzerland; Milwaukee and San Diego, USA.Borrow a copy from the library | Borrow an ebook Reservoir 13 by Jon McGregor (British). Nominated by Brussels, Belgium; Sydney and Winnipeg, Canada; Nottingham, UK; Limerick, Ireland and Bergen, Norway.Borrow a copy from the library | Borrow an ebook Conversations with Friends by Sally Rooney (Irish). Nominated by Liverpool, Dublin and Stockholm, Sweden.Borrow a copy from the library | Borrow an ebook Idaho by Emily Ruskovich (American). Nominated by Brugges, Belgium.Borrow a copy from the library Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders (American). Nominated by Prague, Czech Republic; Reykjavík, Iceland; Barcelona, Spain; Cincinnati, Portland, Kansas City, Denver, Concord and Iowa City, USA.Borrow a copy from the library | Borrow an ebook A Boy in Winter by Rachel Seiffert (British). Nominated by Bergen, Norway.Borrow a copy from the library Home Fire by Kamila Shamsie (Pakistani / British). Nominated by Philadelphia, Richmond and Columbia, USA.Borrow a copy from the library Speaking about the award Lord Mayor of Dublin, and Patron of the Award, Nial Ring said "The egalitarian way in which books are long listed, through public libraries worldwide, is to be commended in a world where sales figures can dominate the literary conversation so often. The beauty of this award is that it reaches out to readers and authors worldwide, while also celebrating excellence in contemporary Irish literature represented on the 2019 shortlist by Sally Rooney and Bernard MacLaverty."The titles on this year’s shortlist were nominated by public libraries in Barbados, Belgium, Canada, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Norway, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the UK and the USA said Mairead Owens, Dublin City Librarian. The novels come from France, Ireland, Pakistan, the UK and the USA and it is from this diverse list that the eventual winner will be chosen. Memorable characters tell stories of identity and displacement, violence and war, family, relationships and loss, set in both familiar and unfamiliar countries and cultures. ‘The five member international judging panel, chaired by Hon. Eugene R. Sullivan, will select one winner, which will be announced by the Lord Mayor, Patron of the Award, on Wednesday 12th June.
Congratulations to Sebastian Barry, son of Dublin and well regarded around here this long time as he embarks on his three year stint as Laureate for Irish Fiction.As who for what?The Laureateship is an initiative of the Arts Council which has the following aims:honouring an established Irish writer of fiction;encouraging a new generation of writers;promoting Irish literature nationally and internationally;encouraging the public to engage with high quality Irish fiction.What will the Laureate do anyway?Well, the good news is that as the Laureate Sebastian will continue his work as a creative author, on top of this however he will take on new responsibilities.During the three years he will spend one semester at University College Dublin and one at New York University. While there he will teach creative writing courses, work with staff and students and also deliver an annual lecture Additionally, the Laureate for Irish Fiction will engage in a select number of major public events per annum, with the primary objective of promoting and encouraging greater engagement with Irish literature.On top of this he will embark on a programme of public events around the theme of, amongst other things, ‘The Golden Age of Writers and Readers’. What this will involve will play out over the next three years but Sebastian has given a few hints, speaking at the award ceremony he said:“There are at least 20 people if not more who at the moment would be highly qualified to do this laureateship. That hasn’t always been the case. When I was starting out in the 70s you had four or five and that was it.... I’m quite overwhelmed sometimes by meeting a Sally Rooney or a Rob Doyle because they seem to me rather tremendous … there’s a formidable quality to the writing. What unites them is the ability to generate the shock that rare work gives the reader, not only in the pleasure and gratitude it engenders, but the serious business of the lines and engines of your own life finding answer and echo in another’s art.”Who is Sebastian Barry?For shame! Barry was born in Dublin in 1955. he has won more awards than you could shake a stick at but some highlight include his winning the Costa Novel award in 2008 for 'The secret scripture' and in 2016 for 'Days without end'. 2005's 'A long long way' was selected as Dublin City Public Library's 'One City One Book' in 2007. For more information on the man himself check out his Wikipedia entry. To borrow his books from your local library check out our online catalogue, if ebooks are more you style you will find them on our BorrowBox service.If you want to keep up with what Sebastian will be doing for his time in office it would be worth following the Laureate twitter feed.
Congratulations to Sara Baume whose second book 'a line made by walking' has been shortlisted for the Goldsmiths Prize 2017. 'A line made by walking' charts a young artist's search for meaning and healing in rural Ireland. Struggling to cope with urban life and life in general, Frankie retreats to her family's rural house on "turbine hill," vacant since her grandmother's death three years earlier.Listen back to Sara reading from and discussing 'a line made by walking' at our recent Contemporary Irish Authors series at the Central Library.Irish authors have good form, winning three out of four Goldsmiths Prizes since its inception in 2013.The shortlist features two former winners of the International Dublin Literary Award, Nicola Barker, who won in 2000 with Wide Open and and Jon McGregor, who won in 2012 with Even the Dogs. Will Self as the author of many books, needs no introduction! There is one debut novel on the shortlist, Playing Possum by Kevin Davey. First Love is the fifth novel by English author Gwendoline Riley. She has previously won the Betty Trask Award and a Somerset Maugham Award.The full shortlist, with links to our catalogue:H(a)ppy by Nicola Barker. Williiam HeinemannA Line Made by Walking by Sara Baume. William HeinemannPlaying Possum by Kevin Davey. Aaaargh! PressReservoir 13 by Jon McGregor. 4th EstateFirst Love by Gwendoline Riley. GrantaPhone by Will Self. VikingAbout the AwardThe Goldsmiths Prize was established in 2013 to "celebrate the qualities of creative daring... and to reward fiction that breaks the mould or opens up new possibilities for the novel form." (Quote) The prize is sponsored by Goldsmiths, University of London in association with the New Statesman, and is open to works by authors from the UK and the Republic of Ireland.Previous winners2016: Solar Bones by Mike McCormack2015: Beatlebone by Kevin Barry2014: How to be Both by Ali Smith2013: A Girl is a Half-Formed Thing by Eimear McBrideThe winner will be announced on 15 November.
Sara Baume was yesterday awarded the Rooney Prize for Irish Literature in recognition of her outstanding achievement as a fiction writer. The prize is awarded annually to an emerging Irish writer under forty years of age for a body of work that the selection committee considers shows exceptional promise. However the Prize website does state that 'a single exceptional work may warrant an award'.Right: Sara Baume (photo: Tramp Press)Sara's debut novel, Spill Simmer Falter Wither, was published in Ireland by Tramp Press earlier this year and recently released in the UK by Windmill Books. It has been longlisted for this year's Guardian First Book Award, being the readers' nominee. Sara has also won the Davy Byrnes Short Story Award in 2014 and earlier this year won the Hennessy New Irish Writing Award. Her short fiction has been published in The Dublin Review, The Moth, The Penny Dreadful, The Stinging Fly and the Irish Independent as part of the Hennessy New Irish Writing series. Her short story Soulsearcher1 is available in Davy Byrnes Stories 2014.Sara was born in Lancashire in the UK but grew up in County Cork.Book SummarySpringtime, and two misfits – one an eccentric loner and the other a one-eyed dog – forge an unlikely relationship. In a tired seaside town, these outcasts find solace in each other. But as their friendship grows, they are driven away by a community that perceives menace where there is only mishap.About Soulsearcher1Solesearcher1’ is set in a small town on the Irish coast and the characters in it are creatures of habit. The story shows the moment when that sense of habit becomes strange, difficult and sinister, but there is great pleasure in the writing and this makes a piece that is about loneliness and isolation very enjoyable, somehow, with tenderness and insight on every page. (Source: The Stinging Fly)About the Rooney PrizeThe Rooney Prize was established in 1976 through the generosity of Dr Daniel Rooney of the Pittsburgh Steelers (American football team) and of his wife Patricia, and since 2007 it has been administered in Trinity College's Oscar Wilde Centre for Irish Writing of the School of English. It is worth €10,000 to the winner.This is the 39th year of the Prize, and past winners have included Bernard Farrell, Kevin Barry, Neil Jordan and Anne Enright. Last years' winner was Colin Barrett.Read alsoSpill Simmer Falter Wither by Sara Baume review – a deft and moving debut (Guardian)Spill Simmer Falter Wither by Sara Baume - book review: A heart-breaking read from a major new talent (UK Independent)Sara Baume: ‘I actually hate writing. It’s really hard’ (Irish Times)Sara Baume is readers' nominee for Guardian first book award 2015 (Guardian)Davy Byrnes Short Story Award (The Stinging Fly)Visit Sara Baume on the web. See also Tramp Press.
Wednesday, 4th June, proved a good day for Irish fiction writing, as two authors were recipients of Awards on the international literary stage. First up was the announcement that John Banville had been conferred with Spain's Prince of Asturias Award for Literature. In so doing, he picks up a cash prize of €50,000. This award was established in 1981 by the soon to be King of Spain, Prince Felipe. The jury gave the award to John Banville (left, image source) "for his intelligent, insightful and original work as a novelist, and on his alter ego, Benjamin Black, author of disturbing, critical crime novels" (quote).Next came the news that Eimear McBride had won the Baileys Women's Prize for Fiction for her novel 'A Girl is a Half-Formed Thing'. The Award brings with it a cash prize of £30,000. Helen Fraser, chair of judges, says of McBride’s startling debut: "An amazing and ambitious first novel that impressed the judges with its inventiveness and energy. This is an extraordinary new voice – this novel will move and astonish the reader." In so doing, she beat off some stiff competition from the likes of Chimamanda Ngozi Adiche, Donna Tartt, and fellow Irish shortlisted nominee Audrey Magee.About John BanvilleJohn Banville was born in Wexford in 1945, and has had a glittering literary career. He won the Booker Prize in 2005 for his novel 'The Sea' and he has also won the Austrian State Prize for European Literature. In 2013 he was awarded the 'Bob Hughes Lifetime Achievement Award' at the Irish Book Awards. His most recent novel is 'Ancient Light' (2012), a story of obsessive young love and the power of grief. He has also written a number of crime fiction books under the pen name Benjamin Black, the most recent being 'The Black-Eyed Blonde, a Philip Marlowe novel' (2014). Banville served for a time as literary editor of the Irish Times newspaper.About Eimear McBrideEimear McBride was born in 1976 in Liverpool to Northern Irish parents. She moved to Ireland at the age of three with her parents and spent her childhood in counties Sligo and Mayo. At the age of seventeen she moved to London. 'A Girl is a Half-formed Thing' tells the story of a young woman's relationship with her brother, and the long shadow cast by his childhood brain tumour. It is a highly original novel that navigates complicated family relationships and memories using stream of consciousness. It recently won the Kerry Group Irish Novel of the Year Award, and in November 2013 the inaugural Goldsmiths Prize. It was also shortlisted for the inaugural Folio Prize. Amazingly, it spent some ten years on the shelf before being accepted by a publisher. Read about the Baileys Prize shortlist.
Two Irish Authors on Baileys Women's Prize for Fiction Shortlist
Two Irish authors, Eimear McBride and Audrey Magee have been shortlisted for the Baileys Women's Prize for Fiction for their debut novels, A Girl is a Half-formed Thing and The Undertaking.A Girl is a Half-formed Thing by Eimear McBride is a highly original novel that navigates complicated family relationships and memories using stream of consciousness. It was recently shortlisted for the inaugural Folio Prize and won the inaugural Goldsmiths Prize 2013, a literary award for fiction that "opens up new possibilities for the novel form". Audrey Magee's The Undertaking, a powerful first novel set in Germany and the Soviet Union during World War II, is an intense portrayal of ordinary people pushed to do extraordinary things, setting in motion events that will have horrific consequences.Also on the shortlist is Nigerian writer Chimamanda Ngozi Adiche who won the award in 2007 for Half of a Yellow Sun.Here's the full shortlist (with links to library catalogue):Chimamanda Ngozi Adiche – AmericanahHannah Kent – Burial RitesJhumpa Lahiri – The LowlandAudrey Magee – The UndertakingEimear McBride – A Girl is a Half Formed ThingDonna Tartt – The GoldfinchThe winner will be announced on 4th June 2014.
The BORD GÁIS Energy Irish Book Award winners were announced last night.Authors Roddy Doyle, Darina Allen, Paul Howard and Michael Harding were among the winners in the various categories.Children’s writers Benji Bennett and Derek Landy, newcomer Niamh Boyce, crime writer Louise Philips, sports writer David Walsh, short story writer Billy O’ Callaghan and Fintan O’Toole were also honoured at the gala ceremony held in Dublin.Esteemed novelist John Banville (left, image source) was presented with the 'Bob Hughes Lifetime Achievement Award 2013' by actress Sinéad Cusack for his contribution to Irish literature, and a tribute to the late Seamus Heaney was screened during the ceremony which featured accolades from former US President Bill Clinton and Edna O’ Brien.The winners in the various categories were:RTÉ Radio 1’s The John Murray Show Listeners’ Choice Award: 'Staring at Lakes' by Michael HardingThe Eason Novel of the Year: 'The Guts' by Roddy DoyleThe Books Are My Bag Best Irish-published Book of the Year: 'A History Of Ireland in 100 Objects' by Fintan O’TooleThe International Education Services Ltd Popular Fiction Book of the Year: 'Downturn Abbey' by Ross O’Carroll KellyThe Ireland AM Crime Fiction Book of the Year: 'The Doll's House' by Louise Philips The Sunday Independent Newcomer of the Year: 'The Herbalist' by Niamh BoyceThe Specsavers Children’s Book of the Year Jnr.: 'When You Were Born' by Benji BennettThe Specsavers Children’s Book of the Year Snr: 'Skulduggery Pleasant: Last Stand of Dead Men' by Derek LandyThe RTÉ Television Sports Book of the Year 'Seven Deadly Sins' by David WalshThe Avonmore Cookbook of the Year: '30 Years of Ballymaloe' by Darina AllenThe Bord Gáis Energy Bookshop of the Year: The Clifden Bookshop, Clifden, Co. GalwayThe Bob Hughes Lifetime Achievement Award: John Banville
With the news just out that the debut novel of Irish author Eimear McBride has been shortlisted for the Goldsmiths Prize, I got thinking about how much of an impact Irish authors have been making of late, most particularly first-time novelists. Eimear's book, 'A Girl is a Half-formed Thing', had in fact been rejected by publishers for a good number of years until Galley Beggar Press took a chance on it, a book other publishers thought too experimental. And of course, appropriately enough, the new literary award that is the Goldsmiths Prize is awarded to fiction that "breaks the mould and opens up new possibilities for the novel form" (site quote).So best wishes to Eimear McBride with her debut novel, one which Ann Enright of the Guardian newspaper describes as "an instant classic", Anne in fact going on to say that McBride is "that old fashioned thing, a genius, in that she writes truth-spilling, uncompromising and brilliant prose". Eimear's book by the way is amongst some illustrious contenders, with none other than Man Booker Prize favourite Harvest by Jim Crace in the mix.The first-time Irish novelist that you will have heard most about over the past couple of months has surely got to be Donal Ryan, whose book 'The Spinning Heart' was one of the thirteen titles included on this year's Man Booker longlist. While the book did not unfortunately make the shortlist of five, making the rather short longlist (!) was an accolade in itself. And, as if that wasn't enough, 'The Spinning Heart', which has received rave reviews (The Spectator, The Guardian, Writing.ie), is on the current Guardian First Book Award longlist. Talk of McBride and publisher rejection, word is that this book was rejected 47 times before eventually being published!While Donal Ryan might have been the most mentioned Irish debut novelist in recent months, Kevin Barry is surely THE Irish author of 2013 when it comes to accolades and achievements. His winning of the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award in June of this year with his first novel, 'City of Bohane', must rank him among the top achievers in terms of international authors, not to mind Irish. In winning the Award he is the recipient of the largest prize there is for a single novel published in English, nominations for which are made by public libraries around the globe. The Award is an initiative of Dublin City Council and is administered by Dublin City Public Libraries. Of the book, the Award judges said: "Kevin Barry’s Ireland of 2053 is a place you may not want to be alive in but you’ll certainly relish reading about. This is not a future of shiny technology but one in which history turns in circles and quirks an eyebrow at the idea of ‘progress’".The next author that comes to mind and who I consider very much worthy of mention has to be Belinda McKeon who, with her debut novel 'Solace', won the Bord Gáis Irish Book of the Year Award in 2011 and the Sunday Independent Best Newcomer Award for the same year. In July 2012, she was awarded the Geoffrey Faber Memorial Prize for the same book. This Award is given in alternate years for works of fiction and works of poetry The book was also shortlisted for the 2012 James Tait Black Memorial Prize in Fiction. Claire Coghlan of the Irish Independent said that McKeon had produced "a gorgeously written love story" where her "characterisation is flawless", and where the dialogue is "spot on in cadence and nuance" and at times is "both funny and achingly sad". An author vying to make her mark and shortlisted for the 2013 Kerry Group Irish Novel of the Year Award is Kathleen MacMahon, whose debut novel 'This is How it Ends' has been described in the Irish Independent as "truly a story for our time". This book, a love story between an Irish architect and an American searching for his roots, seems to have become something of a worldwide hit, with sales in 25 countries across the globe. The Irish Independent article goes on to claim that the book "signals the belated arrival of a new Irish commercial writer with an extraordinary gift and a voice that is entirely her own". Nicola Barr of the Guardian says of this love story that, while it may not have a "cross-gender appeal" it will "leave you a weeping mess"! Kathleen MacMahon of course has literary pedigree, being as she is the granddaughter of that well-known short-story writer and novelist Mary Lavin. And in case you are wondering, no, she did not win the Irish Novel of the year Award!Should you wonder too if I have wandered from my usual topic for good, fear not, for my last mention is the detective thriller and debut novel 'Disappeared' by Northern Irish writer Anthony Quinn. Obviously not to be confused with a certain famous actor of the same name, or for that matter a certain Liverpool-born author. This Anthony Quinn was shortlisted for this year's US Strand Magazine Book Critics Award for 'Disappeared', the winning debut author incidentally being Matthew Quirk. Should you be curious, you might want to check out this Q&A involving Quinn and leading Irish crime fiction author, reviewer and journalist, Declan Burke. Quinn's book has been described as "a complex, but very intriguing story", one which is very exciting, well-plotted and atmospheric, and with characters that are "richly drawn". That from a source (Eurocrime) that I regularly refer to for its commentaries on new and not so new crime fiction works. So I for one will in due course seek it out.Now, all this talk of debut novels and award nominees and winners has made me very curious as to how Irish crime fiction writers fare in that regard, and I have this certain feeling that the answer awaiting will not disappoint. More anon!
CILIP Carnegie Greenaway 2013 Winners Announced Today
The CILIP Carnegie Medal and Kate Greenway Medal winners for 2013 have just been announced. The Carnegie Medal was won by Dyslexic author Sally Gardner with 'Maggot Moon' (published by Hot Key Books). In this tale, when his best friend Hector is suddenly taken away, Standish Treadwell realises that it is up to him, his grandfather and a small band of rebels to confront and defeat the ever-present oppressive forces of The Motherland.The shortlist also included award-winning Irish author Roddy Doyle's 'A Greyhound of a Girl'. Read about the shortlist on previous blog post.The Kate Greenway Medal was won by illustrator Levi Pinfold for only his second picture book, 'Black Dog' (published by Templar Publishing).Read the CILIP press announcement | Award Website.The Carnegie Medal, awarded annually, was established in 1936 in memory of the Scottish-born philanthropist Andrew Carnegie (1835 - 1919). Carnegie set up more than 2,800 libraries across the English speaking world. The Award is the oldest accolade for children's writing in the UK. The Kate Greenaway Medal was established in 1955, for distinguished illustration in a book for children. The award is named after the popular nineteenth century artist known for her beautiful children's illustrations and designs.
Yesterday saw the shortlist announcement for the 2012 Orange Prize for Fiction, the UK's annual book award for fiction written by a woman. In its 17th year, the Prize 'celebrates excellence, originality and accessibility in women's writing throughout the world' (quote).Included on the shortlist is 'The Forgotten Waltz', the story of an adulterous affair and the fifth novel by Irish writer Anne Enright. Enright, who has been nominated three times for the Orange award, won the Man Booker Prize in 2007 for her novel 'The Gathering'.Other books on the shortlist include 'Half Blood Blues' by Canadian writer Esi Edugyan, 'Painter of Silence' by Britain's Georgina Harding, and three works by American authors - 'The Song of Achilles' by Madeline Miller, 'Foreign Bodies' by Cynthia Ozick and 'State of Wonder' by Ann Patchett.The award ceremony takes place in London on the 30th May.You can read the full shortlist announcement on the award website.Reviews of The Forgotten Waltz"The Forgotten Waltz, teeming with credible characters that are difficult to empathise with, forces us to look in the mirror. It reveals human beings as capable of empathy, but not empathetic; capable of self-awareness, but constantly fleeing from it. It is a discomfiting public examination of conscience, an exposé of our national shortcomings so recently in the limelight." Irish Independent, April 2012."Cloaked in a novel about a love affair is a ferocious indictment of the self-involved material girls our era has produced." New York Times, Sept 2011."Less important than the momentum of the affair is Enright's playful and beautifully expressed examination of how it feels to cross the line." The Independent, March 2012."Enright has established herself as one of the most grown-up of contemporary novelists, one of the few to pay attention to the messiness of ordinary lives... Anne Enright has taken a great risk in writing this book, but she has brought it off superbly." The Telegraph, April 2011.