Five internationally significant Irish authors have today been announced as finalists for this year’s Listowel Writers’ Week / Kerry Group Irish Novel of the Year Award. The €15,000 award is the largest monetary prize for fiction available solely to Irish authors.
The shortlist was announced by this year’s award adjudicators: author, David Park and literary critic, Eileen Battersby. Over 50 novels were submitted for the award. The five novels and authors on the list are: Time Present & Time Past by Deirdre Madden; A Girl is a Half-formed Thing by Eimear McBride; Transatlantic by Colum McCann; Arimathea by Frank McGuinness; The Thing About December by Donal Ryan.
Wealth of Writing
“Selecting a shortlist was an incredibly difficult task. Ireland continues to produce a wealth of writing that transcends age, gender and background. The high level of submissions is indicative of the cultural importance we continue to attribute to telling stories. Despite the challenges involved and the many close calls we believe we have arrived at a shortlist that embodies both contrasting styles and a consistency of quality,” – said David Park.
Established in 1995 and sponsored by Kerry Group, the Kerry Group Irish Novel of the Year is an annual award for Irish authors of fiction. Previous winners of the award include Christine Dwyer Hickey, Neil Jordan, John Banville, Joseph O’Neill, Roddy Doyle, Sebastian Barry, John McGahern and in 2013 Gavin Corbett.
“Kerry Group is delighted to sponsor the Kerry Group Irish Novel Award 2014. This prestigious award, now in its 19th year, continues to attract books of exceptional merit from a myriad of accomplished and aspiring Irish writers. With five outstanding novels featured on this year’s shortlist, it is evident that Ireland’s literary tradition goes from strength to strength. I commend our two adjudicators, Eileen Battersby and David Park, for compiling this year’s shortlist which showcases a rich and diverse selection of Irish writing,” – said Frank Hayes, Director of Corporate Affairs, Kerry Group.
The winner of the award will be announced at the opening ceremony of the 2014 Listowel Writers’ Week on Wednesday, 28 May, 2014.