An Post Irish Book Awards give Man Booker winner stamp of approval

Emilie Pine, John Boyne, Dervla McTiernan and Liz Nugent shortlisted in two categories

John Boyne, Cecelia Ahern and Matt Cooper, three of the authors shorltisted for the 2018 An Post Irish Book Awards. Photograph: Patrick Bolger

John Boyne, Cecelia Ahern and Matt Cooper, three of the authors shorltisted for the 2018 An Post Irish Book Awards. Photograph: Patrick Bolger

 

The GPO on Dublin’s O’Connell Street was famously the headquarters for the Easter Rising, a revolution led by poets and writers, so it was an appropriate location for this evening’s announcement of the An Post Irish Book Awards shortlists.

It is no surprise that Man Booker Prize winner Milkman by Anna Burns is shortlisted for novel of the year alongside the two longlisted Irish titles, From a Low and Quiet Sea by Donal Ryan and Normal People by Sally Rooney, along with A Ladder to the Sky by John Boyne, Travelling in a Strange Land by David Park and Future Popes of Ireland by newcomer Darragh Martin.

The Importance of Being Aisling by Emer McLysaght & Sarah Breen must be favourite for popular fiction book of the year, given its phenomenal success and the fact that their first book was shortlisted last year but did not win a prize. There will also be a lot of support for Letters to My Daughters, a huge bestseller when it was published posthumously after Emma Hannigan died last March. Graham Norton, whose debut Holding won in 2016, is back again with A Keeper, another No 1 bestseller although less well received by critics. Also shortlisted are Grace After Henry by Eithne Shortall; Our Secrets and Lies by Sinéad Moriarty; and Dancing with the Tsars by Ross O’Carroll-Kelly.

For a book of essays, Notes to Self by Emilie Pine has been a surprise bestseller and the subject of huge critical acclaim. It is shortlisted in two categories, nonfiction book of the year and newcomer of the year and must be a strong contender to win at least one, although both fields look very competitive.

People Like Me by Lynn Ruane; Michael O’Leary by Matt Cooper; Climate Justice by Mary Robinson; On The Edge by Diarmaid Ferriter; and A Reluctant Memoir by Robert Ballagh complete a heavyweight shortlist for nonfiction book of the year. Newcomer of the year is also an exciting list, with The Earlie King and the Kid in Yellow by Danny Denton; This Hostel Life by Melatu Uche Okorie (a debut coup for both author and publisher Skein Press); Promising Young Women by Caroline O’Donoghue, Mind on Fire by Arnold Thomas Fanning; and, appropriately for an An Post award,The Lost Letters of William Woolf by Helen Cullen. (Darragh Martin, however, is strangely absent.)

Skin Deep by Liz Nugent and The Ruin by Dervla McTiernan feature in both the crime fiction and Ryan Tubridy Show listeners’ choice award. Their thriller rivals are A House of Ghosts by WC Ryan; The Confession by Jo Spain; One Click by Andrea Mara; and Thirteen by Steve Cavanagh. Tubridy listeners have also voted for Ladder To The Sky by John Boyne; The Stolen Girls by Patricia Gibney; The President Is Missing by Bill Clinton And James Patterson; and The Woman In The Window by AJ Finn.

The traditionally male-dominated sports book of the year features two female double acts – Game Changer by Cora Staunton with Mary White and Driven by Rosemary Smith with Ann Ingle – as well as The Hurlers by Paul Rouse; At All Costs by Davy Fitzgerald with Vincent Hogan; Fighter by Andy Lee with Niall Kelly; and Sean Cavanagh: The Obsession by Sean Cavanagh with Damian Lalor.

The awards cover 16 categories, including children’s, cookery, sports, short story, poetry, teen and young adult and a new Irish language category. The shortlists are compiled by a panel of booksellers, librarians and critics. The public are now being asked to vote online at irishbookawards.irish/vote2018/. The winners, chosen by a combination of a literary academy and the public, will be announced at an awards ceremony hosted by Keelin Shanley in Dublin’s Clayton Hotel, on November 27th.

Maria Dickenson, the awards chairperson, said: “This year’s shortlist once again demonstrates the wonderful wealth of writing talent we have in Ireland. We know that the Irish literary culture is regarded as one of the greatest in the world and we’ve always wished for an awards project that rises to that challenge. We’re immensely proud of what we’ve achieved with the Irish Book Awards through a broad coalition of readers, publishers, writers, booksellers, librarians and media.

“We are also delighted to welcome An Post this year as the new headline sponsor. An Post is, we think, a marvellous fit for the awards because writing and spreading the word is their business, as it is ours. The Irish Book Awards have become a landmark event in the Irish bookselling calendar, supported by the entire industry, and, with An Post on board, we will bring the event to an exciting new level, celebrating the vibrancy of the Irish book business.”

David McRedmond, CEO at An Post, said: “Our message is simple: These are fantastic books. Buy them and send them to your friends. Enjoy them.”

An Post Irish Book Awards shortlists 2018

EASON BOOK CLUB NOVEL OF THE YEAR
Milkman by Anna Burns (Faber & Faber)
From a Low and Quiet Sea by Donal Ryan (Doubleday Ireland)
A Ladder to the Sky by John Boyne (Doubleday)
Normal People by Sally Rooney (Faber & Faber)
Travelling in a Strange Land by David Park (Bloomsbury Publishing)
Future Popes of Ireland by Darragh Martin (Fourth Estate)

SPECSAVERS POPULAR FICTION BOOK OF THE YEAR
The Importance of Being Aisling by Emer McLysaght & Sarah Breen (Gill Books)
Letters to My Daughters by Emma Hannigan (Hachette Books Ireland)
Grace After Henry by Eithne Shorthall (Corvus)
Our Secrets and Lies by Sinéad Moriarty (Penguin Ireland)
A Keeper by Graham Norton (Coronet)
Dancing with the Tsars by Ross O’Carroll-Kelly (Penguin Ireland)

ONSIDE NONFICTION BOOK OF THE YEAR
Notes to Self by Emilie Pine (Tramp Press)
People Like Me by Lynn Ruane (Gill Books)
Michael O’Leary by Matt Cooper (Penguin Ireland)
Climate Justice by Mary Robinson (Bloomsbury Publishing)
On The Edge by Diarmaid Ferriter (Profile Books)
A Reluctant Memoir by Robert Ballagh (Head of Zeus)

IRELAND AM POPULAR NONFICTION BOOK OF THE YEAR
Tony 10 by Declan Lynch & Tony O’Reilly (Gill Books)
Help Me! by Marianne Power (Picador)
The Skin Nerd by Jennifer Rock (Hachette Books Ireland)
The Cow Book by John Connell (Granta Books)
Play It Again, Des by Des Cahill & Mary Hannigan (Sport Media)
Born for the Road: My Story So Far by Nathan Carter (Penguin Ireland)

SUNDAY INDEPENDENT NEWCOMER OF THE YEAR
The Earlie King and the Kid in Yellow by Danny Denton (Granta Books)
This Hostel Life by Melatu Uche Okorie (Skein Press)
Notes to Self by Emilie Pine (Tramp Press)
The Lost Letters of William Woolf by Helen Cullen (Michael Joseph)
Promising Young Women by Caroline O’Donoghue (Virago)
Mind on Fire by Arnold Thomas Fanning (Penguin Ireland)

IRISH INDEPENDENT CRIME FICTION BOOK OF THE YEAR
Skin Deep by Liz Nugent (Penguin Ireland)
A House of Ghosts by WC Ryan (Bonnier Zaffre)
The Confession by Jo Spain (Quercus)
One Click by Andrea Mara (Poolbeg)
The Ruin by Dervla McTiernan (Sphere)
Thirteen by Steve Cavanagh (Orion)

THEJOURNAL.IE BEST IRISH PUBLISHED BOOK OF THE YEAR
Lighthouses of Ireland: An Illustrated Guide to the Sentinels that Guard our Coastline, by Roger O’Reilly (The Collins Press)
The Great Irish Weather Book by Joanna Donnelly illustrated by Fuchsia MacAree (Gill Books)
Dr Hibernica Finch’s Compelling Compendium of Irish Animals by Rob Maguire illustrated by Aga Grandowicz (Little Island Books)
People on the Pier by Betty Stenson & Marian Thérése Keyes (New Island Books)
Humanology by Prof Luke O’Neill (Gill Books)
Blazing A Trail: Irish Women Who Changed the World by Sarah Webb illustrated by Lauren O’Neill (The O’Brien Press)

NATIONAL BOOK TOKENS CHILDREN’S BOOK OF THE YEAR (JUNIOR)
The First Christmas Jumper: And the Sheep Who Changed Everything by Ryan Tubridy illustrated by Chris Judge (Walker Books)
The Magic Moment by Niall Breslin illustrated by Sheena Dempsey (Gill Books)
The President’s Cat by Peter Donnelly (Gill Books)
Here We Are: Notes for Living on Planet Earth by Oliver Jeffers (HarperCollins Children’s Books)
The Pooka Party by Shona Shirley Macdonald (The O’Brien Press)
I Say Ooh, You Say Aah by John Kane (Templar Press)

NATIONAL BOOK TOKENS CHILDREN’S BOOK OF THE YEAR (SENIOR)
Tin by Pádraig Kenny (Chicken House)
The Trouble with Perfect by Helena Duggan (Usborne Publishing)
Secret Science: The Amazing World Beyond Your Eyes by Dara Ó Briain illustrated by Dan Brammall (Scholastic)
The Storm Keeper’s Island by Catherine Doyle (Bloomsbury Children’s Books)
Blazing A Trail: Irish Women Who Changed the World by Sarah Webb illustrated by Lauren O’Neill (The O’Brien Press)
The Dog Who Lost His Bark by Eoin Colfer illustrated by PJ Lynch (Walker Books)

DEPT 51@ EASON TEEN/YOUNG ADULT BOOK OF THE YEAR
Doctor Who: Twelve Angels Weeping by Dave Rudden (BBC Children’s Books )
The Surface Breaks by Louise O’Neill (Scholastic)
The Wren Hunt by Mary Watson (Bloomsbury)
The Weight of a Thousand Feathers by Brian Conaghan (Bloomsbury)
Spare and Found Parts by Sarah Maria Griffin (Titan Books)
Dark Wood Dark Water by Tina Callaghan (Poolbeg)

EUROSPAR COOKBOOK OF THE YEAR
The Currabinny Cookbook by James Kavanagh & William Murray (Penguin Ireland)
Vegan-ish by Holly White (Gill Books)
The Happy Pear: Recipes for Happiness by David and Stephen Flynn (Penguin Ireland)
Donal’s Meals in Minutes by Donal Skehan (Hodder & Stoughton)
How to Eat a Peach by Diana Henry (Mitchell Beazley)
Neven Maguire’s Home Economics for Life by Neven Maguire (Gill Books)

BORD GÁIS ENERGY SPORTS BOOK OF THE YEAR
The Hurlers by Paul Rouse (Penguin Ireland)
At All Costs by Davy Fitzgerald with Vincent Hogan (Gill Books)
Fighter by Andy Lee with Niall Kelly (Gill Books)
Sean Cavanagh: The Obsession by Sean Cavanagh with Damian Lalor (Black & White Publishing)
Driven by Rosemary Smith with Ann Ingle (HarperCollins)
Game Changer by Cora Staunton with Mary White (Transworld Ireland)

RTÉ RADIO 1’S THE RYAN TUBRIDY SHOW LISTENERS’ CHOICE AWARD
Ladder To The Sky by John Boyne (Doubleday)
The Stolen Girls by Patricia Gibney (Bookouture)
The President Is Missing by Bill Clinton And James Patterson (Century)
Ruin by Dervla McTiernan (Sphere)
Skin Deep by Liz Nugent (Penguin Ireland)
The Woman In The Window by AJ Finn (HarperCollins)

LISTOWEL WRITERS’ WEEK IRISH POEM OF THE YEAR
Kintsugi by Shannon Kuta Kelly (Poetry Ireland Review)
Birthday by Brian Kirk (After the Fall, Salmon Poetry)
Inglis & Co. Ltd. by Erin Halliday (Poetry Ireland Review)
The Snail  by John W Sexton (SurVision Magazine)

WRITING.IE SHORT STORY OF THE YEAR
How to Build a Space Rocket by Roisin O’Donnell (from The Broken Spiral ed by RM Clarke)
Prime by Caoilinn Hughes (from Granta, March 2018)
The Mother by Deirdre Sullivan (The Dublin Review, December 2017)
Pollyfilla by Mia Gallagher (from Shift , New Island Books)
Gooseen by Nuala O’Connor (from Granta, June 2018)
The Woman Who Was Swallowed Up by the Floor and Who Met Lots of Other Women Down There Too by Cecelia Ahern (from Roar, Harper Collins)

THE LOVE LEABHAR GAEILGE IRISH LANGUAGE BOOK OF THE YEAR
Tuatha Dé Danann by Diarmuid Johnson (Leabhar Breac)
Fuascailt an Iriseora by Michelle Nic Pháidín (Cois Life)
Táin Bó Cuailnge by Darach Ó Scolaí (Leabhar Breac)
Teach an Gheafta by Cathal Ó Searcaigh (Leabhar Breac)
Lámh, Lámh Eile by Alan Titley (Cló Iar-Chonnacht)
Luíse Ghabhánach Ní Dhufaigh: Ceannródaí by Celia De Fréine (LeabhairCOMHAR)

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