Launch of the 2015 International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award

142 books have been nominated by libraries worldwide for the €100,000 International IMPAC DUBLIN Literary Award, the world’s most valuable annual literary prize for a single work of fiction published in English.  Nominations for the 2015 Award include 49 novels in translation with works by 37 American, 19 British, 9 Canadian, 9 Australian and 7 Italian authors. Organised by Dublin City Council, the 2015 Award was launched today by the Lord Mayor of Dublin, Christy Burke, Patron of the Award, at a ceremony in The Dublin City Library & Archive.

The five Irish titles nominated are:

  • The Herbalist by Niamh Boyce, nominated by Galway County Library, Ireland.
  • The Guts by Roddy Doyle, nominated by Liverpool City Libraries, UK.
  • TransAtlantic by Colum McCann, nominated by Halifax Public Libraries, Canada; Dublin City Public Libraries, Ireland; Waterford City & County Libraries, Ireland; Liverpool City Libraries, UK; New Hampshire State Libraries, Concord, USA; The Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, USA.
  • The Rising of Bella Casey by Mary Morrissy, nominated by Cork City Libraries and Dublin City Public Libraries, Ireland.
  • The Thing About December by Donal Ryan, nominated by Limerick City Library, Ireland.

The Award is managed by Dublin City Council’s library service. Margaret Hayes, Dublin City Librarian, announced that the 142 books eligible for the 2015 award were nominated by libraries in 114 cities and 39 countries worldwide; noting that ‘49 are titles in translation, spanning 16 languages and 29 are first novels. Readers at home and abroad will find new books and new authors on the longlist, and they can pit themselves against the international panel of judges and pick their own favourite, before the Lord Mayor announces the twentieth winner on 17th June next year’.

Lord Mayor, Christy Burke, commended the IMPAC DUBLIN Award for its promotion of excellence in world literature as well as for the opportunity to promote Irish writing internationally.  ‘I am delighted to be Patron of this Award as it enters its twentieth year. Dublin is a UNESCO City of Literature and cultural tourism is a vital part of the City’s economy’ he said. ‘Initiatives such as this Award, the Dublin Writer’s Festival and One City, One Book have consolidated Dublin’s position as a centre of literary excellence on the world stage.’

The 2015 Judging Panel comprises Irish novelist Christine Dwyer Hickey, winner of the Irish Novel of the Year 2012 for The Cold Eye of Heaven; Valentine Cunningham (British) Professor of English Language and Literature at Oxford University; Daniel Hahn (British) award winning translator, writer and  editor, Chair of the Society of Authors; Kate Pullinger (Canadian) winner of The Governor General’s Award for Fiction and Professor of Creative Writing and Digital Media at Bath Spa University; Jordi Soler (Mexican/Spanish) author of books of poems, story collections, and ten novels translated  into several languages and a regular contributor to newspapers and magazines in Spain and Mexico. The non-voting Chairperson is Eugene R. Sullivan (USA).

Other novels nominated for the 2015 Award include The Narrow Road to the Deep North by Richard Flanagan, winner of the 2014 Man Booker Prize, The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt, winner of the 2014 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, and The Good Lord Bird by James McBride, winner of the 2013 National Book Award.

Among the 49 translated authors are French author Andreï Makine (born in Russia), Ma Jian (Chinese), Elena Ferrante (Italian), Eugen Ruge (German) and Jón Kalman Stefánsson (Icelandic). For the first time, translated titles comprise over one third of the longlist – 34.5%.

Two previous winners have also been nominated, 2011 winner Colum McCann and 1997 winner Javier Marías.

 The libraries’ most popular book this year, and one of the most nominated books since the award began, is Donna Tartt’s The Goldfinch, chosen by 19 libraries in Austria, Belgium, Canada, France, Germany, New Zealand and the USA.

Note – The most nominated books since 1996 were The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon in 2005 (23 nominations), and Room by Emma Donoghue in 2012 (20 nominations).

Other books nominated by multiple libraries are Life After Life by Kate Atkinson, Americanah by Chimamandra Ngozi Adichie and The Luminaries by Eleanor Catton. All four of the most popular books this year are by women. They are followed by And the Mountains Echoed by Khaled Hosseini and The Orenda by Joseph Boyden.

All of the novels nominated for the Award are available for readers to borrow from Dublin’s public libraries. The full list of 142 titles is available on www.impacdublinaward.ieThe shortlist will be made public on 15th April 2015 and the Lord Mayor will announce the winner on 17th June. 

For further information: Press Office, Dublin City Council, 00353 1 222 2106

*Download the 2015 International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award launch media release.*

The International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award is a Dublin City Council initiative.