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IMPAC Dublin Literary Award Winner Announced!

jim crace

IMPAC Dublin Literary Award Winner Announced!

On Wednesday June 17th, 2015, the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award was awarded to Jim Crace, for his novel Harvest, at Dublin’s Mansion House. Jim Crace, a British author, was awarded the world’s largest prize (€100,000) for a single novel published in English.

Crace is not a newcomer to the world of literature, in fact he has written ten previous novels and was shortlisted once before in 1999 for the IMPAC Award, for his book Quarantine. He was born in Hertfordshire and grew up in North London, and now lives in Birmingham.

He had this to say on being this year’s prize winner: “It has been an overwhelming surprise and a delight to discover that my latest book has won the IMPAC Dublin award. Harvest proved to be a generous novel in the writing. Readers and critics were more than generous in their responses. And now, thanks to the further generosity of a whole wide-world network of book-loving strangers, Harvest has struck lucky again – it will be included in the distinguished and twenty-year-long list of fiction honoured by this truly international and discriminating award. No writer could hope for more than that.”

The Lord Mayor of Dublin, Christy Burke, who was in attendance to present this year’s winner with the award and acted as Patron, said: “The IMPAC Dublin award has a tremendous legacy of achievement; 20 years of being a truly international ward, drawing its winners from countries and cultures where, as in Dublin, potential is recognised, excellence rewarded, and translation is respected. 2015 marks a significant milestone as the 20th year of the IMPAC Dublin Literary Award. Not only has it changed the lives of the winning writers and translators but also bought widespread visibility to all the works shortlisted and nominated.”

“Harvest is a story that explores some of our greatest fears, those of change and difference. Jim Crace, our 20th winner, joins a unique creative collective whose stories will continue to cast a spell over readers for many years to come,” the Librarian for Dublin City, Margaret Hayes, commented on Jim Crace’s win.

The award has been running for 20 years and has only had three previous British winners. The novel was first published in the UK by Picador and competed with 142 other titles. The novel is about a village in England, which is not so far from abandonment and the death of this village, its people, and their way of life.  The theme of this novel was quite common during early 20th century literature in Britain, as slowly urban life was crushing the small rural ideal.

One judge commenting on the novel had this to say: “At times, Harvest reads like a long prose poem; it plays on the ear like a river of words. But then again, Jim Crace is a consummate wordsmith; his understanding of human nature is uncanny and he never drops a stitch from start to finish. All human life is here: its graces and disgraces and there is life too in every small stone, flower and blade of grass. A powerful and compelling novel, Harvest is a worthy winner of the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award.”

The Irish award is quite prestigious. 114 libraries, from 39 different countries, and five different continents, nominated novels from around the world and ten of these were shortlisted by an international panel of judges. Out of the short-listed novels, three translated novels from Brazil, France, Morocco, Australia, Nigeria, the UK and the USA were short-listed.

Congratulations to new winner Jim Crace, for winning this year’s award, it is a great achievement!

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