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
Christmas Holidays - time to curl up with a book...
I love the long, warm, bright summer evenings - but the long, chilly, dark winter evenings have their charms too, as long as I have something good to read. The girls in my house have stored up some special reads for those lazy days between Christmas and New Year. We've had to banish the chosen books from sight so we're not tempted to start reading immediately - there lies grave danger of no present buying, pudding making, tree trimming or other essential ingredients of Christmas. Daughter Number One is hoarding Caitlin Moran's 'Moranthology' - she enjoyed 'How To Be A Woman' and no doubt we'll all dip into this anthology if we get a chance. Her second choice is another anthology, 'We Have a Good Time, Don't We?' by Maeve Higgins. Having loved Maeve's quirky comedy routines and television appearances (especially 'Fancy Vittles' with her sister Lily Higgins) she is looking forward with mounting pleasure to meeting Maeve again in print. If Maeve's recent columns in the Irish Times as stand-in for Róisín Ingle are any indication, the book should be a great read (I'll be waiting in line to grab it as soon as she puts it down).Daughter Number Two is a history addict and has ordered the O'Brien Press graphic novel 'At War With The Empire' by Gerry Hunt - it will be an historic moment in itself if I can keep it out of her hands until after Christmas. She will also probably re-read 'The Fault In Our Stars' a sad and funny coming of age novel by John Green. In fact, given enough time curled up in her new dinosaur 'onsie' she will probably read her way through John Green's entire back catalogue.Both of them will spend many competitive minutes scanning 'Where's Larry' - Ireland's answer to 'Where's Wally' - to find Larry the Leprechaun at the Cliffs of Moher, Newgrange, the St. Patrick's Day Parade and, my favourite, Puck Fair (who says you have to grow up?)And me? I've squirreled away 'Standing in Another Man's Grave', the new Rebus novel by Ian Rankin - fans don't need an explanation. I might also try 'Brother Grimm' by Craig Russell, as recommended by a fellow blogger on this site - who could resist the joint lure of crime and fairytales? Neither daughter is a crime fiction fan (yet) so I won't have to fight to keep the books to myself - though I reserve the right to steal glances at their choices. Roll on the holidays!All seven of our holiday reading choices are available in Dublin City Public Libraries - though you might have to join a waiting list for the more popular titles (or ask Santa). Ten seems to be the magic number for lists, so I'd love to hear your three suggestions to finish the holiday reading list - go on...tell us - who will you be curling up with this Christmas?
This week the Dublin Writer's Festival is taking place from June 4th - 10th.There's a taste of everything from philosophy and fiction to poetry, music, film,discussions and workshops. Writers from home and abroad take part in the events. There are some interesting readings and creative writing workshops for children also. It is well worth having a look!
A Winning Night at Bord Gais Energy Irish Book Awards
Ireland's 'glitterati' came out in force last night at the Bord Gais Energy Irish Book Awards Ceremony in the Concert Hall of the RDS. In a night when Seamus Heaney received the Lifetime Achievement Award, presented by fellow poet Michael D. Higgins, President of Ireland, it would be easier to say who wasn't there, than who was - even former US President Bill Clinton appeared in a pre-recorded tribute to 'one of the world's favourite poets'.The Irish Book Award winners are voted on by the public and the various categories were hotly contested. All winning and shortlisted books are available to borrow from Dublin City Public Libraries. Winners on the night were;Neil Jordan, for his novel Mistaken (Hughes & Hughes Irish Novel of the Year)Belinda McKeown, for her novel Solace (Sunday Independent Best Irish Newcomer of the Year)Sheila O'Flanagan, for her novel All for You (Easons Irish Popular Fiction Book of the Year)Alan Glynn, for his novel Bloodland (Ireland AM Irish Crime Fiction Book of the Year)Tim Robinson, for Connemara (International Education Services Best Irish Published Book of the Year)Caitlyn Moran, for How to be a Woman (RTE John Murray Show Listener's Choice)Rachel Allen, for Easy Meals (Argosy Irish Non-fiction Book of the Year)Nicholas Roche, for Inside the Peloton (Irish Sports Book of the Year)Chris Judge, for his picturebook The Lonely Beast (Specsavers Irish Children's Book of the Year: Junior)Anna Carey, for her novel The Real Rebecca (Specsavers Irish Children's Book of the Year: Senior)A full list of all the short listed titles is still available on the Irish Book Awards website.