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April 15, 2014

2014 Pulitzer Prize goes to ‘The Goldfinch’ by Donna Tartt

Donna Tartt’s bestselling novel “The Goldfinch,” published by Little, Brown, won the 2014 Pulitzer Prize for fiction Monday. On Twitter, the Columbia University School of Journalism, which announces the awards, had a slip of the finger in its announcement, at first tweeting that the winner was “The Goldfish.”

In their citation, the judges described “The Goldfinch” as a “beautifully written coming-of-age novel with exquisitely drawn characters that follows a grieving boy’s entanglement with a small famous painting that has eluded destruction, a book that stimulates the mind and touches the heart.”

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April 9, 2014

Baileys Women’s Prize for Fiction: the shortlist

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, author of 'Americanah'

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, author of ‘Americanah’

Six authors from across the globe unveiled on the Women’s Prize for Fiction shortlist, as judges promise they will change the way readers view of the world.

By Hannah Furness.

Readers no longer care where in the world their books are set, insiders have said, as not a single author with full British citizenship features on the Baileys Women’s Prize shortlist for the first time since 1998.

This year’s shortlist features six female writers from across the globe, including novels from US writer Donna Tart, Irish Eimear McBride, and Nigerian author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie.

Their works will go up against novels from Australian Hannah Kent, Irish Audrey Magee and Jhumpa Lahiri, who holds dual US and British citizenship after being born in London but moving to America aged just two.

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March 14, 2014

Folio Prize: George Saunders wins with short story collection

Tenth of December - George Saunders

Tenth of December – George Saunders

American writer George Saunders has won the inaugural Folio Prize for his “darkly playful” short story collection, Tenth of December.

The new prize, open to English-language writers from around the world, pre-empts the Man Booker Prize, which this year expands to a global level.

Saunders picked up his £40,000 cheque at a ceremony in central London on Monday night.

The eight-strong shortlist had been dominated by American authors.

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March 10, 2014

Catton, Tartt and Atwood on Baileys Women’s Prize longlist.

 

GoldfinchBy Sarah Shaffi.

Six debut novelists will compete against writers at the “top of their form” on the longlist for this year’s Baileys Women’s Prize for Fiction [full longlist below].

Former Women’s Prize winners Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie (Half of a Yellow Sun, 2007) and Suzanne Berne (A Crime in the Neighbourhood, 1999) are nominated, while other major names include Donna Tartt, Margaret Atwood and 2013 Man Booker Prize winner Eleanor Catton.

 

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Crace, Aslam, Forna win $150k Windham Campbell prizes.

windam-campbell-prizeBy Sarah Shaffi.

Man Booker shortlisted Jim Crace is one of eight recipients of this year’s $150,000 Windham Campbell Literature Prizes.

The eight winners, from seven countries, receive the generous awards in recognition of their achievements and to support their work.

Also winning are novelists Nadeem Aslam, author of The Blind Man’s Garden and Maps for Lost Lovers (both Faber), and Aminatta Forna, whose latest novel The Hired Man is published by Bloomsbury. Pankaj Mishra, author of From the Ruins of Empire (Penguin), was a winner in the non-fiction category, as was Canadian John Vaillant, whose The Tiger: A True Story of Vengeance and Survival is published by Sceptre.

British playwright Sam Holcroft, published by Nick Hern Books, also won an award, in the drama category, alongside Kia Corthron from the US (Methuen/NoPassport Press) and Australian Noëlle Janaczewska (Currency Press).

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January 27, 2014

Etisalat Prize for Literature Announces 2013 Shortlist

AfricaEtisalat Prize for Literature Announces 2013 Shortlist

Innovative telecommunications company in Nigeria, Etisalat, today announced the 2013 shortlist for the Etisalat Prize for Literature.

Bom Boy by Yewande Omotoso (Modjaji Publishers)
Finding Soutbek by Karen Jennings (Holland Park Press)
We Need New Names by NoViolet Bulawayo (Little, Brown and Company/Chatto & Windus UK)

In its inaugural year, the Etisalat Prize for Literature is the first Pan-African literary prize created to recognize and reward debut fiction writers in Africa. The winner will be presented with a cheque of £15,000, an engraved Montblanc Meisterstück and will attend The Etisalat Fellowship at the prestigious University of East Anglia, mentored by Professor Giles Foden, author of the Last King of Scotland.

The shortlist was decided after a retreat in Morocco where the judges met to discuss at length the nine longlisted books. Pumla Gqola, Chair of the Judges said ‘We discussed each of the books on the long list in quite some detail, although considerably more time was dedicated to those books that were ranked differently by the judges. We are quite pleased to have reached yet another important milestone in the young life of the Prize’.

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November 21, 2013

‘Good Lord Bird’ Is Surprise Winner for National Book Award in Fiction

Good Lord BirdBy JULIE BOSMAN

James McBride won the National Book Award on Wednesday night for “The Good Lord Bird,” an irreverent, sharp-eyed novel narrated by an escaped slave. It was published by Riverhead Books, part of Penguin Random House.

Taking the stage with a stunned expression, Mr. McBride, who was considered an underdog in speculation before the awards, said he had not bothered to write a speech.

Mr. McBride wrote the book amid personal tragedies, he said, naming the deaths of his mother and his niece, and the unraveling of his marriage.

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October 16, 2013

Man Booker Prize 2013: Youngest star Eleanor Catton joins Booker luminaries

Booker Prize winner Eleanor Catton, second left, at a photocall in London last weekend with fellow shortlisted authors, from left, Jhumpa Lahiri, Colm Tóibín, NoViolet Bulawayo and Ruth Ozeki

Booker Prize winner Eleanor Catton, second left, at a photocall in London last weekend with fellow shortlisted authors, from left, Jhumpa Lahiri, Colm Tóibín, NoViolet Bulawayo and Ruth Ozeki

Eleanor Catton wins at the age of 28 with 832-page novel of ‘astonishing maturity’

By

Eleanor Catton has become the youngest writer to win the Man Booker Prize, with the longest novel to triumph in the award.

Catton, 28, beat competition from Colm Tóibín, NoViolet Bulawayo, Jhumpa Lahiri, Ruth Ozeki and the favourite, Jim Crace, to be awarded the £50,000 prize by the Duchess of Cornwall at a ceremony in Guildhall in London.

The author began The Luminaries, her second novel, aged 25, and has eclipsed the previous youngest recipient of the award, Ben Okri, who won aged 32 in 1991.

 

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October 11, 2013

Canadian Alice Munro makes history with Nobel Prize win for literature

 

By Jared Bland and Sandra Martin

munro19rv1For the first time in history, the Nobel prize in literature has been awarded to a Canadian. Alice Munro, one of the world’s most respected and admired writers, was named this morning as the winner of the prize in an especially notable year: one in which she has announced her retirement.

Earlier this year the 82-year-old author of 14 books of short stories declared her intention to stop writing, stating that her most recent book, Dear Life, would be her last.

“I knew I was in the running, yes, but I never thought I would win,” Munro said by telephone when contacted by The Canadian Press in Victoria. She added that she was “just terribly surprised.”

“I’m amazed and very grateful,” she said in a statement read by her longtime editor, Douglas Gibson, Thursday morning.

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October 8, 2013

Governor General Literary Award finalists announced (updated)

Canadian Man Booker Prize contender Eleanor Catton is in the running for another prestigious honour

“The Lion Seeker”By Victoria Ahearn

When South African-raised, Toronto-based writer Kenneth Bonert first tackled fiction, he experimented with many different styles, including fantastical, allegorical short stories in the style of Kafka.

“But they weren’t very good,” admits the 41-year-old, who’s also worked as a journalist. “And when I started to write realistic, real fiction, the voices that were the strongest for me — the characters that I heard, the people that I knew — were the ones from my childhood.”

Bonert’s instincts have paid off.

On Wednesday, his ambitious debut novel, “The Lion Seeker” — about a young Jewish man who immigrates to Johannesburg from a small village in Lithuania before the Second World War — made the short list for a $25,000 Governor General’s Literary Award.

The Johannesburg-bred Bonert says the novel is partly inspired by the stories his Jewish grandmother used to tell him in Yiddish of her childhood village in Lithuania.

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