Dara McAnulty shortlisted for Books Are My Bag readers award

A preview of Saturday’s books pages and a roundup of the latest literary news

Dara McAnulty (16), author of Diary  of a Young Naturalist.

Dara McAnulty (16), author of Diary of a Young Naturalist.

 

Bookshops across Britain and Ireland have revealed their favourite books and authors of 2020, as the shortlist for the Books Are My Bag Readers Awards was announced today.

As well as Diary of a Young Naturalist by 16-year-old Dara McAnulty, which has already won the Wainwright Prize, shortlisted titles include: The Vanishing Half by Brit Bennett; Humankind by Rutger Bregman; The Devil and the Dark Water by Stuart Turton; Kim Jiyoung, Born 1982 by Cho Nam-joo, translated by Jamie Chang; Cinderella is Dead by Kalynn Bayron; and Alice Oseman for Heartstopper Vol 3.

Nine debut writers are among the 25-strong shortlists across six categories. In addition to Nam-joo, McAnulty and Bayron, the others are: Eliza Clark for Boy Parts; Summer Young for Sylvanian Family; Elle McNicoll for A Kind of Spark; Jean Menzies for Greek Myths (illustrator Katie Ponder); Kiley Reid for Such a Fun Age; and Douglas Stuart for Shuggie Bain.

The winners will be announced on November 10th.

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The Boy From the Woods by Harlan Coben is this week’s Irish Times Eason offer. When you buy Saturday’s paper in any branch, you can pick up the bestselling thriller for €4.99, a saving of €7.

This Saturday’s books pages feature an interview with Sinéad Gleeson about The Art of the Glimpse, her anthology of 100 Irish short stories.

Reviews include Conor Gallagher on Beyond the Tape by Marie Cassidy; Doug Battersby on Sisters by Daisy Johnson; Laura Kennedy on Never Mind the B#ll*cks, Here’s the Science by Prof Luke O’Neill; Seán Hewitt on Jack by Marilynne Robinson; Cliona on three Irish-language poetry collections; Rachel Andrews on Little Dancer Aged Fourteen by Camille Laurens; Sarah Gilmartin on Earthlings by Sayaka Murata; and Declan Burke on the best new crime fiction.

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The Book Show will be returning with Rick O’Shea on RTE Radio 1 for a new series starting on Sunday October 11th. Book clubs are invited to get in touch so they can put questions to authors about books they have recently read. Contact bookshow@rte.ie.

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Poetry Ireland celebrates the life and work of Ciaran Carson with a commemorative event to mark the first anniversary of his death, featuring readings and reflections from some of his many friends and fellow writers, poets and musicians, including Liam Carson, Theo Dorgan, Peter Fallon, Tess Gallagher, Rachael Hegarty, Michael Longley, Paula Meehan, Sinead Morrisey, Paul Muldoon, Pádraigín Ní Uallacháin, Glenn Patterson, Stephen Sexton and Desi Wilkinson.

Visit the Poetry Ireland YouTube channel at 7.30pm on Friday, October 9th.

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The 24th plaque on the Galway Poetry Trail has just been unveiled at Newtownsmith, on the River Walk in Galway city. It features an extract from Eilis Dillon’s Death at Crane’s Court, in which she captures the atmosphere of the river walk from the Salmon Weir Bridge to the Galway Docks.

The trail – a series of plaques dotted around the city which each feature a piece of writing about the place in which they are situated – is a joint initiative of Tom Kenny of Kennys Bookshop and Galway City Council.

The plaque was unveiled by Dillon’s son Cormac Ó’ Cuilleanáin and her daughter Eilean Ní Cuilleanáin, who are both also writers. At 7pm tonight, Cúirt International Festival of Literature hosts Ceiliúradh Eilís Dillon, a discussion of her writing at the Town Hall .

2020 is the centenary of Eilís Dillon’s birth. She was born in Galway in March 1920 and died in 1994, having written over 50 books.

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