2009 Longlist | 2008 Winner | 2008 Shorts | 2007 | 1996-2006

The International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award (official site) is the largest and most international prize of its kind. It involves libraries from all corners of the globe, and is open to books written in any language. The Book Award, an initiative of Dublin City Council, is a partnership between Dublin City Council, the Municipal Government of Dublin City, and IMPAC, a productivity improvement company which operates in over 50 countries. The Award is administered by Dublin City Public Libraries

The prize is €100,000 which is awarded to the author if the book is written in English. If the winning book is in English translation, the author receives €75,000 and the translator, €25,000. The winner also receives a trophy which is sponsored by Waterford Crystal. The 2008 will be given for a book published in 2006. This delay gives an opportunity for the consultative process to work well .Recent winners include notables such as; Colm Tóibín, Orhan Pamuk, Nicola Barker, David Malouf and Herta Muller amongst others.

2009 IMPAC Dublin International Literary Award Longlist

Monday 10th November 2008: Eibhlin Byrne, Lord Mayor of Dublin, announced today that 146 writers have been nominated for 2009 The International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award 100,000 euro Award. It is the world's most valuable annual literary prize for a single work of fiction published in English and is a Dublin City Council initiative, in partnership with IMPAC. The nominations come from 157 libraries in 117 cities and 41 countries worldwide and can be viewed on www.impacdublinaward.ie. Dublin City Council will announce the shortlist on 2nd April 2009 and the winning novel will be revealed by the Lord Mayor on 11th June 2009.

The 146 novels nominated include The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz, winner of this year’s Pulitzer Prize, The Book of Negroes by Lawrence Hill, winner of the 2008 Commonwealth Writers Prize and Omega Minor by Paul Verhaeghen, winner of the 2008 Independent Foreign Fiction Award.

Full List of Nominated titles

Nominating Libraries

Commentary on Longlist Award Tragic Blog -

2008 Lebanese-Canadian Author Rawi Hage Wins EU100,000 Irish Literary Award

Nominated by Winnipeg Public Library, Canada

June 12 (Bloomberg) -- Lebanese author Rawi Hage {left}won the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award, rawi_hagecollecting 100,000 euros ($154,000) in what is billed as the world's richest prize for a single work of fiction.deniros_game_cover

Hage was honored during a ceremony in Dublin City Hall for De Niro's Game by Rawi Hage- a debut novel about two childhood friends who grow into adulthood in war-torn Beirut and must choose between exile abroad or staying in the city and surviving on crime.

The book overcame competition from seven other better-known finalists, including Patrick McCabe's ``Winterwood'' and Yasmina Khadra's ``The Attack.''

``I am a fortunate man,'' Hage said at the ceremony. ``After a long journey of war, displacement and separation, I feel that I am one of the few wanderers who is privileged enough to have been rewarded,'' said Hage, who was born in Beirut and lived through nine years of civil war before emigrating to Canada.

The judges described De Niro's Game ' as ``an eloquent, forthright and at times beautifully written first novel.''

``Ringing with insight and authenticity, the novel shows how war can envelop lives,'' the panel said in a statement. ``It's a game where there are no winners, just degrees of survival.''

Other finalists included Javier Cercas for ``The Speed of Light,'' Yasmine Gooneratne for ``The Sweet and Simple Kind,'' Gail Jones for ``Dreams of Speaking,'' Sayed Kashua for ``Let It Be Morning,'' and Andrei Makine for ``The Woman Who Waited.''

First awarded in 1996, the IMPAC award is meant to promote excellence in world literature. The contest is managed by Dublin City Libraries and draws on nominations from librarians around the globe. This year's 137 nominations came from 162 public library systems in 122 cities.

Previous winners include Per Petterson's ``Out Stealing Horses'' (2007) and Colm Toibin's ``The Master'' (2006).

Previously shortlisted for both the 2006 Giller Prize and the Governor General’s Award, Lebanese-Canadian Author Rawi Hage (left)is now in the running for one of the world's most prestigious prizes.

Rawi Hage (born 1964) is a Canadian writer and photographer.

Born in Beirut, Hage grew up in Lebanon and Cyprus. He moved to New York City in 1982, and after studying at the New York Institute of Photography, relocated to Montreal in 1991, where he studied arts at Dawson College and Concordia University. He subsequently began exhibiting as a photographer, and has had works acquired by the Canadian Museum of Civilization and the Musée de la civilisation de Québec.

Hage has published journalism and fiction in several Canadian magazines. His debut novel, De Niro's Game (2006), was shortlisted for the 2006 Scotiabank Giller Prize and the 2006 Governor General's Award for English fiction. He was also awarded two Quebec awards, Hugh MacLennan Prize for Fiction and the McAuslan First Book Prize at the Quebec Writers' Federation literary award. (Thanks to Wiki for bio details)

Publishers note: In Rawi Hage's astonishing and unforgettable novel, this famous quote by Camus becomes a touchstone for two young men caught in Lebanon's civil war. Bassam and George are childhood best friends who have grown to adulthood in wartorn Beirut. Now they must choose their futures: to stay in the city and consolidate power through crime; or to go into exile abroad, alienated from the only existence they have known. Bassam chooses one path: Obsessed with leaving Beirut, he embarks on a series of petty crimes to finance his departure. Meanwhile, George builds his power in the underworld of the city and embraces a life of military service, crime for profit, killing, and drugs.

Told in the voice of Bassam, De Niro's Game is a beautiful, explosive portrait of a contemporary young man shaped by a lifelong experience of war.

Rawi Hage brilliantly fuses vivid, jump-cut cinematic imagery with the measured strength and beauty of Arabic poetry. His style mimics a world gone mad: so smooth and apparently sane that its razor-sharp edges surprise and cut deeply. A powerful meditation on life and death in a war zone, and what comes after.

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The 2008 IMPC Dublin Literary Award Short List

* The Speed of Light by Javier Cercas - Details
* The Sweet and Simple Kind by Yasmine Gooneratne- Details

* De Niro's Game by Rawi Hage- Details- Winner
* Dreams of Speaking by Gail Jones- Details
* Let It Be Morning: A Novel by Sayed Kashua- Details
* The Attack by Yasmina Khadra- Details
* The Woman Who Waited by Andrei Makine- Details
* Winterwood by Patrick McCabe - Details

Top Selling Spanish Author Cercas On Dublin Short List

The Speed of Light by Javier Cercassped_of_light_cover- Nominated by Helsinki City Library, Finland

cercas_javierJavier Cercas (left, born 1962, Ibahernando, Cáceres, Spain) is Professor of Spanish literature at the University of Girona, Spain. He is a frequent contributor to the Catalan edition of El País and the Sunday supplement. He worked for two years at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in the United States.

A novelist, short-story writer and essayist, his books include El móvil (The Motive, 1987), and Relatos reales (True Tales, 2000). His work Soldiers of Salamis (Soldados de Salamina) has sold more than 500,000 copies in all editions in Spain

In The Speed of Light, as in his multiple prize-winning Soldiers of Salamis, Cercas draws a compelling line between historical trauma and today's confusion in this story of a young Spanish teacher in the Mid-West, drawn into the orbit of an elusive Vietnam veteran. In some ways a re-mix of the civil-war motif of Salamis, the novel shows a rare ability to braid past and present into gripping narrative. Anne McLean has provided a fine translation from tech original Spanish.

Publisher note: The young hero of The Speed of Light is an aspiring writer in provincial Spain in the 1980s, dreaming of burning success, searching for a real story to tell. Out of the blue he is offered the chance to work in a in a Midwestern university and soon he is in the United States, living a happy, carefree life, working and writing.
Little does he know that his burgeoning friendship with the Vietnam Vet Rodney Falk, a man of few friends and strange ways, will influence the course of his entire life, or that he will become obsessed with unravelling the mystery at the heart of Rodney’s life.
Why do people sometimes ridicule and sometimes fear Rodney? Why does he shun the world? Why does he accept and befriend the narrator? What really happened at My Khe?
When the young writer’s own life takes a terrible twist many years later, Rodney may be the only person in the world who can save him.

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Accomplished University Professor Yasmine Gooneratne Makes the Big-Tigooneratneme

The Sweet and Simple Kind by Yasmine Gooneratne- Nominated by Colombo Public Library, Sri Lanka

sweet_simple_coverWhilst she has enjoyed prior acclaim for her literary efforts, being short listed for the Dublin surely ranks as the pinnacle to date for Yasmine Gooneratne (right).

Born in 1935 in Sri Lanka. She is a university professor, literary critic, editor, bibliographer, novelist, essayist and poet. Gooneratne was educated at the Universities of Ceylon and Cambridge. She became a resident in Australia in 1972. She holds a personal chair of English at Macquarie University 1991- and was the foundation Director of the Post-Colonial Literatures and Language Research Centre, 1988-93. She has been a visiting professor or expert specialist at, among places here and overseas, Edith Cowan University, University of Michigan, Ann Abor, and University of the South Pacific.

Gooneratne has published sixteen books. They include works on literary criticism, edited anthologies of Asian poetry and prose, two novels and several volumes of poetry. Her books include her family history Relative merits : a personal memoir of the Bandaranaike family of Sri Lanka (1986). Her first novel, A Change of Skies (1991) won the 1992 Marjorie Barnard Literary Award for Fiction and was short listed for the 1991 Commonwealth Fiction Prize and her second novel, The Pleasures of Conquest (1995) was short listed for the 1996 Commonwealth Writers Prize and The Sweet and Simple Kind for the 2007.

Publishers note: Resonant in its social insights and beautifully written, Yasmine Gooneratne creates a richly imagined world of love, political chicanery and family turmoil in the newly independent Sri Lanka of the 1950s and 60s. As a highly political family attempts to balance language with religion, and privilege with equity, two smart, sassy young women pursue their personal freedoms. The Sweet & Simple Kind enchants us with its combination of authenticity, humour and passion, and haunts us with reminders of what we were and what we might have been.

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Australian Author in Line for Another Prize

Dreams of Speaking by Gail Jones- Nominated by State Library of New South Wales, Sydney, Ajones_gailustralia and the National Library of Australia, Canberra.

Gail Jones (left)(born 17 June 1955) is an Australian novelist and academic. She was born in Harvey, Western Australia and educated at the University of Western Australia. She has travelled extensively and is currently Associate Professor in the English Department of the University of Western Australia where she teaches literature, cinema and cultural studies.

Ms Jones is the author of two collections of short stories, Fetish Lives and The House of Breathing. Her first novel, Black Mirror, won the Nita B. Kibble Award and the Fiction Prize in the Western Australian Premier's Book Awards in 2003. Her second novel, Sixty Lights, was longlisted for the Man Booker Prize in 2004, shortlisted for the 2005 Miles Franklin Award, and won the 2005 Age Book of the Year Award for Fiction, and the Fiction and Premier's Prize in both the Western Australian Premier's Book Awards 2004 and the South Australian Festival Award for Literature in 2006. Dreams of Speaking has been shortlisted in 2007 for the Miles Franklin Award, the NSW Premier's Award and the Nita B. Kibble Award. Hedreams_of_speaking_coverr latest novel is Sorry.

Publishers notes: We must talk, Alice Black, about this world of modern things.This buzzing world.’

Alice is entranced by the aesthetics of technology and, in every aeroplane flight, every Xerox machine, every neon sign, sees the poetry of modernity. Mr Sakamoto, a survivor of the atomic bomb, is an expert on Alexander Graham Bell. The pair forge an unlikely friendship as Mr Sakamoto regales Alice with stories of twentieth-century invention. His own knowledge begins to inform her writing, and these two solitary beings become a mutual support for each other a long way from home.

This novel from Man Booker longlisted author Gail Jones is distinguished by its honesty and intelligence. From the boundlessness of space walking to the frustrating constrictions of one person’s daily existence, Dreams of Speaking paints with grace and skill the experience of needing to belong despite wanting to be alone.

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Novel Translated from Hebrew in the Running From Young Author

Let It Be Morning: A Novel by Sayed Kashua- Nominated by Jafet Library- American University of Beirut. Translated from Hebrew by Miriam Shlesinger

Sayed Kashua was born in 1975 in the Galilee and studied at Hebrew University in Jerusalem. He writes a weekly column for Ha'aretz, Israel's most prestigious newspaper.

Publishers note: In his searing new novellet_it_be-morning_cover, a young Arab journalist returns to his hometown—an Arab village within Israel—where his already vexed sense of belonging is forced to crisis when the village becomes a pawn in the never-ending power struggle that is the Middle East. Hoping to reclaim the simplicity of life among kin, the prodigal son returns home to find that nothing is as he remembers: everything is smaller, the people are petty and provincial. But when Israeli tanks surround the village without warning or explanation, everyone inside is cut off from the outside world. As the situation grows increasingly dire, the village devolves into a Darwinian jungle, where paranoia quickly takes hold and threatens the community’s fragile equilibrium. With the enduring moral and literary power of Camus and Orwell, Let It Be Morning offers an intimate, eye-opening portrait of the conflicted allegiances of the Israeli Arabs, proving once again that Sayed Kashua is a feerless writer.

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A Woman's Pseudonym To Avoid Persecution

The Attack by Yasmina Khadra- Translated from the original French by John Cullen

Nominated by: Bibliothèque Municipale de Lyon, France, Kansas City Public Library, USA, Dublin City Pubmoulessehoul_mohammed.jpglic Libraries, Ireland

Yasmina Khadra is the pen name of the Algerian author Mohammed Moulessehoul (left) (born January 10, 1955).The name actually belongs to his wife who supported and encouraged him to write clandestinely. Honourably the author says, "By borrowing her names, I try to be worthy of her."

An officer in the Algerian army, he had to adopt a woman's pseudonym to avoid military censorship. Despite the publication of many successful novels in Algeria, Moulessehoul only revealed his true identity in 2001 after leaving the army and going into exile and seclusion in France. Anonymity was the only way for him to survive and avoid censorship during the Algerian Civil War. In 2004, Newsweek acclaimed him as "one of the rare writers capable of giving a meaning to the violence in Algeria today."

Publishers Note: Ammine, a surgeon in a Jerusalem hospital, struggles to cope with the mangled bodies of victims of a suicide bombing in a downtown Jerusalem pizza restaurant. He is harassed, well-meaning, utterly dedicated and professional – and a naturalised Israeli Arab.

When the police pin responsibility the suicide attack on Ammine's wife, hethe_attack_cover is at first baffled, disbelieving and angry. But his feelings turn to confusion and sorrow when he discovers his wife was indeed behind the attack, as he travels to Nazareth and Gaza, attempting to discover who could have convinced his wife to do such a thing, and why she might have done so. His life, he discovers, is a lie: not only the lie told to him for several years by his wife – a naturalised Arab who slowly became political – but also the lie he has been telling himself, that his place as an Arab in Israeli society is normal: that the intifada is an aberration, that he – educated, civilised, cosmopolitan, with a beautiful house and Jewish friends who come to dinner – is the future of Arabs in Israel.

The result is an inexorable tragedy, the destruction of a good man who does not understand and does not wish to understand the struggles beneath the surface of his life. He is a healer, and believes this absolves him from any involvement in the surrounding ‘struggle’; but he learns that to remain neutral is death. The novel offers no solutions: it ends, as it also began, with the Israeli helicopter bombing of a Gaza village to which the doctor has come in his final understanding of his wife’s choices. Ammine dies in the attack – which he may have brought upon himself and the other villagers by his high-profile search for ‘truth’.

Khadra writes with an urgency and an inevitability which is both terrifying and exciting, and this glimpse into an ordinary world split asunder is compelling, often beautifully written and compulsively readable.

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Russian Exile Makes it to Dublin Award via France's Top Literary Prizes
The Wmakine_andreioman Who Waited by Andrei Makine- Nominated by Waterford County Library, Ireland

Andreï Makine was born in Krasnoyarsk in Siberia in 1957, but sought asylum in France in 1987. While initially sleeping rough in Paris he was writing his first novel, A Hero's Daughter, which was eventually published in 1990 after Makine pretended it had been translated from the Russian, since no publisher believed he could have written it in French. With his third novel, Once Upon A River Love, he was finally published as a ‘French’ writer, and with his fourth, Le Testament Francais, he became the first author to win both of France’s top literary prizes, the Prix Goncourt and Prix Médicis. Since then Andreï Makine has written The Crime of Olga Arbyelina, Requim for the East, A Life's Music, which won the Grand Prix RTL-Lire, The Earth and Sky of Jacques Dorme, and Thewoman_who_waited Woman Who Waited. All of Makine's novels have been translated into English by Geoffrey Strachan.

Publishers Note: When a young, rebellious writer from Leningrad arrives in a remote Russian village to study local customs, one woman stands out: Vera, who has been waiting thirty years for her lover to return from the Second World War. As fascinated as he is appalled by the fruitless fidelity of this still beautiful woman, he sets out to win her affections. But the better he thinks understands her the more she surprises him, and the more he gains uncomfortable insights into himself.

Lyrically evoking the haunting beauty of the Archangel region, Makine tells a timeless story of the human heart and its capacity for enduring love, selfish passion and cowardly betrayal..

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Patrick McCabe Carries Ireland's Hopes

Winterwood by Patrick McCabe- Nominated by Cork City Libraries, Ireland and Dublin City Libraries, Ireland

Playwright and novelist Patrick McCabe (below) was born in 1955 in Clones, County Monaghan, Ireland. He was educmccabe_patrickated at St Patrick's Training College in Dublin and began teaching at Kingsbury Day Special School in London in 1980. His short story 'The Call' won the Irish Press Hennessy Award.

He is the author of five novels including The Butcher Boy (1992), a black comedy narrated by a disturbed young slaughterhouse worker, which won the Irish Times Irish Literature Prize for Fiction; The Dead School (1995), an account of the misfortunes that befall two Dublin teachers; and Breakfast on Pluto (1998), the disturbing tale of a transvestite prostitute who becomes involved with Republican terrorists. The Butcher Boy and Breakfast on Pluto were both shortlisted for the Booker Prize for Fiction.

He is also the author of a children's book, The Adventures of Shay Mouse (1985), and a collection of linked short stories, Mondo Desperado, published in 1999. His play 'Frank Pig Says Hello', which he adapted from The Butcher Boy, was first performed at the Dublin Theatre Festival in 1992. The play is published in Far from the Land: Contemporary Irish Plays (1998), edited by John Fairleigh. A film adaptation of The Butcher Boy directed by Neil Jordan was first screened in 1996. His short stories have been published in the Irish Times and the Cork Examiner and his work has been broadcast by RTÉ in Ireland and the BBC.

Patrick McCabe lives in Sligo in Ireland with his wife and two daughters. His recent novel, Emerald Germs of Ireland (2001), is a black comedy featuring matricide Pat McNab and his attempts to fend off nosy neighbours. His latest novel, Winterwood, was published in 2006, and was named the 2007 Hughes & Hughes/Irish Independent Irish Novel of the Year.winterwood

Publishers note: The intention was, of course, to bring her out to Winterwood — to that magical place that only me and her knew — but I wouldn’t tell her that until much later on, for I wanted it to be as much of a surprise as possible … Kimono! I remember laughing Kimono and Pinkie Pie! The Magic Castle, here we come!

Winterwood, a place of dreams and mystery. Once, in Kilburn, Redmond was in heaven, married to the sugar-lipped Catherine, and father to lovely daughter Immy. But later, much later, Red did something. And it could all never be like that again.

Winterwood, a place of escape and sanctuary. Red meets Auld Pappie Ned, a fiddler and teller of tales with honeyed words who seems the authentic spirit of ‘the old valley’, indeed a fiddler by nature and a man so mesmerising that Red sees himself anew, so new in fact that only a fresh name will now do as he leaves (he hopes) the demons of his past behind, the apparitions. And then one day Red spies Catherine again … And still even this is not quite enough to save his new love Casey from the man who’s called Dominic Tiernan.

Winterwood, a place of chill and threat. Of danger, and worse.

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Please take me to a full list of the participating libraries

Out Stealing Horses by Norwegian author Per Petterson (below) Wins 2007 Award

pers_pettersonWas the winner of the 12th International IMPAC Dublin Literary Awards Out Stealing Horses was the only translated work on the shortlist this year. It was translated from the original Norwegian into English by Anne Born, who will receive €25, 000 of the €100,000 prize. Born has translated novels of previous IMPAC Dublin nominees including Jens Christian Grondahl’s An Altered Light (2006) and Michael Larsen’s The Snake in Sydney (2002). The novel was published by Harvill Secker. The award is the world’s largest literary prize for a single work of fiction published in English.

The winner was selected by a panel of five international judges and the presentation ceremony took place in Dublin’s City Hall. Petterson’s success follows that of Colm Toibin who last year was the first Irish writer to win the Award


2007 Shortlist-

Arthur and George by Julian Barnes

Nominated by:

* Veria Central Public Library, Greece
* M.I. Rudomino State Library for Foreign Literature, Russia
* Deichmanske Bibliotek, Norway
* Belfast Education & Library Board, Northern Ireland
* Tampere City Library, Tampere, Finland
* Liverpool Libraries & Information Services, Liverpool, England

A Long Long Way by Sebastian Barry

Nominated by:

* Bergen Offentlige Bibliotek, Norway
* Liverpool Libraries & Information Services, England
* State Library of Queensland, Australia
* Dublin City Public Libraries, Ireland
* Provincial Information & Library Resources Board, Gander, Canada
* Free Library of Philadelphia, Philadelphia, USA
* San Diego Public Library, San Diego, USA

Slow Man by J.M. Coetzee

Nominated by:

* Biblioteca Luis Angel Arango, Bogota, Colombia
* Cork City Libraries, Cork, Ireland

Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close: A Novel by Jonathan Safran Foer

Nominated by:

* Halifax Regional Library, Halifax, Canada
* Jacksonville Public Library, Jacksonville, USA
* New Hampshire State Library, Concord, USA
* Public Library of Cincinnati & Hamilton County, Cincinnat, USA
* Richmond Public Library, Richmond, USA
* New York Public Library, New York, USA
* Stedelijke Openbare Bibliotheek Gent, Ghent, Belgium
* Stadtbücherei Frankfurt-am-Main, Frankfurt, Germany

The Short Day Dying by Peter Hobbs

Nominated by:

* Bergen Offentlige Bibliotek, Bergen, Norway

No Country for Old Men by Cormac McCarthy

Nominated by:

* Cleveland Public Library, Cleveland, USA
* Deichmanske Bibliotek, Oslo, Norway
* Lincoln City Libraries, Lincoln, USA

Out Stealing Horses by Per Petterson (Winner)

Translated from Norwegian by Anne Born

Nominated by:

* Deichmanske Bibliotek, Oslo, Norway
* Sølvberget KF - Stavanger Bibliotek og Kulturhus, Stavanger, Norway

Shalimar the Clown by Salman Rushdie

Nominated by:

* Zentral-und Landesbibliothek Berlin, Berlin, Germany

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Past Winners of Dublin Literary Prize

2006 The Master by Colm Tóibín
2005 The Known World by Edward P Jones.
2004 This Blinding Absence of Light by Tahar Ben Jelloun
2003 My Name Is Red by Orhan Pamuk
2002 Atomised by Michel Houellebecq
2001 No Great Mischief by Alistair MacLeod
2000 Wide Open by Nicola Barker
1999 Ingenious Pain by Andrew Miller
1998 The Land of Green Plums by Herta Muller
1997 A Heart So White by Javier Marias
1996 Remembering Babylon by David Malouf

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