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12 April 11

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Orange Prize for Fiction Announces 2011 Shortlist

 

Orange Prize for Fiction Awards Ceremony at Royal Festival Hall, Southbank Centre: 8 June 2011

 

The Orange Prize for Fiction, the UK’s only annual book award for fiction written by a woman, today announces the 2011 shortlist. Celebrating its sixteenth anniversary this year, the Prize celebrates excellence, originality and accessibility in women’s writing from throughout the world. 


Emma Donoghue

Room

Picador

Irish

 

7th Novel

Aminatta Forna

The Memory of Love

Bloomsbury

British/Sierra Leonean

2nd Novel

Emma Henderson

Grace Williams Says it Loud

Sceptre

British

1st Novel

Nicole Krauss

Great House

Viking

American

3rd Novel

 

Téa Obreht

The Tiger’s Wife

Weidenfeld & Nicolson

Serbian/

American

1st Novel

Kathleen Winter

Annabel

Jonathan Cape

Canadian

1st Novel

 

 

The judges for the 2011 Orange Prize for Fiction are:

 

Bettany Hughes, (Chair), Broadcaster, Historian and Author

Liz Calder, founder-director of Bloomsbury Publishing and Full Circle Editions

Tracy Chevalier, Novelist

Helen Lederer, Actress and Writer

Susanna Reid, Journalist and Broadcaster

 

This year’s shortlist honours both new and well-established writers featuring three first novels and one previously shortlisted author; Nicole Krauss (2006).

“We are proud and pleased to announce our shortlist for the Orange Prize 2011,” commented Bettany Hughes, Chair of judges. “Our judging meeting fizzed for many hours with conversations about the originality, excellence and readability of the books in front of us - credit to the calibre of submissions this year.”

She continues, “The clarity and human-understanding on the page is simply breathtaking. The number of first-time novelists is an indicator of the rude health of women's writing.  The verve and scope of storylines pays compliment to the female imagination. There are no subjects these authors don't dare to tackle. Even though the stories in our final choices range from kidnapping to colonialism, from the persistence of love to Balkan folk-memory, from hermaphroditism to abuse in care, the books are written with such a skilful lightness of touch, humour, sympathy and passion, they all make for an exhilarating and uplifting read. This shortlist should give hours of reading pleasure to the wider world.”

The Prize was set up in 1996 to celebrate and promote fiction by women throughout the world to the widest range of readers possible and is awarded for the best novel of the year written by a woman.

The winner will be presented with a cheque for £30,000 and a limited edition bronze statue known as ‘the Bessie’, created by artist Grizel Niven. Both are anonymously endowed.

“We’re proud to be announcing such a strong shortlist,” commented Stuart Jackson, Brand Communications Director at Orange. “As we celebrate our 16th year, we have big digital ambitions for the Orange Prize and are delighted to be strengthening our offering through the Orange Book Store and our social media channels.”

He continued: “Visitors will be able to download free extracts from the shortlist and purchase the full eBooks from the store for their PC, tablet or mobile phone. We’ll also be launching our first Facebook promotion with an exclusive offer on last year’s winner, The Lacuna, something we’re really excited about.”

 

Orange Prize Facebook Promotion

To celebrate the 2011 shortlist, the Orange Book Store - www.orange.co.uk/bookclub - is giving away 250 free eBooks of The Lacuna by Barbara Kingsolver, winner of the 2010 Orange Prize, exclusively to Facebook fans. After the first 250 copies have been won, the Orange Book Store will offer all Facebook fans the chance to purchase The Lacuna at a special 50% discount for one week only, until 18 April. Visit www.facebook.com/orangeprize to enter.

The award ceremony will take place in The Clore Ballroom, Royal Festival Hall, Southbank Centre, London, on 8 June 2011.

Previous winners are Barbara Kingsolver for The Lacuna (2010), Marilynne Robinson for Home (2009), Rose Tremain for The Road Home (2008), Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie for Half of a Yellow Sun (2007), Zadie Smith for On Beauty (2006),  Lionel Shriver for We Need to Talk About Kevin (2005), Andrea Levy for Small Island (2004), Valerie Martin for Property (2003), Ann Patchett for Bel Canto (2002), Kate Grenville for The Idea of Perfection (2001), Linda Grant for When I Lived in Modern Times (2000), Suzanne Berne for A Crime in the Neighbourhood (1999), Carol Shields for Larry’s Party (1998), Anne Michaels for Fugitive Pieces (1997), and Helen Dunmore for A Spell of Winter (1996).

 

-ENDS-

 

 

For more information, to arrange an interview with Chair Bettany Hughes or to speak to the shortlisted authors, please contact:

 

Press Enquiries:

Amanda Johnson or Naomi Li at M&C Saatchi:
Tel: 020 7544 3894/0207 544 3687 or 07715 922 180/07837 252 397
Email: amanda.johnson@mcsaatchi.com or naomi.li@mcsaatchi.com

 

 

Notes to Editors


Orange Prize for Fiction 2011 Dates for the Diary:

·   Orange Prize Shortlist Readings at Southbank Centre: 6 June

·   Orange and Grazia writers’ evening at Southbank Centre: 7 June

·   Orange Prize for Fiction awards ceremony: 8 June


Orange Book Store

·      2011 sees the Orange Prize strengthen ties with the Orange Book Store, a cloud-based bookshop accessible across phone, tablet or PC devices from http://www.orange.co.uk/bookclub, and is powered by Mobcast Services, an award-winning digital book platform provider.

·      A key advantage of the service is the ‘one-click buy’ which bills straight to the user’s Orange account, without ever having to enter any billing details, with credit card billing available for non-Orange customers. This allows book lovers to seamlessly browse and download thousands of books, including those from the Orange Prize for Fiction, straight to their smartphone, PC or tablet device.

·     Orange launched a dedicated Android app at the beginning of this year and an app for iPhone and iPad users is due for launch this summer.

 

About Orange

Orange is the key brand of the France Telecom Group, one of the world's leading telecommunications operators. With almost 131 million customers, the Orange brand now covers Internet, television and mobile services in the majority of countries where the Group operates.

In the UK, Orange provides high quality GSM coverage to 99% of the UK population, and 3G coverage to more than 93%.

Orange and any other Orange product or service names included in this material are trade marks of Orange Brand Services Limited.

On July 1 2010, the company became part of Everything Everywhere, one company that runs two of Britain's most famous brands - Orange UK and T-Mobile UK - with plans to transform the industry by giving customers instant access to everything, everywhere, offering them the best value, best choice and best network coverage in the country. Everything Everywhere Limited is the UK’s biggest communications company, with a combined customer base of almost 28 million people and more than 720 retail stores across the country. Everything Everywhere Limited is registered at Hatfield Business Park, Hatfield, Hertfordshire, AL10 9BW under the registered company number 02382161.

For more information please call the Orange Press Office 0870 3731500, or visit www.orange.co.uk/newsroom 

 

Synopses and Biographies

Emma Donoghue

Room

Picador

Jack is five and excited about his birthday. He lives with his Ma in Room, which has a locked door and a skylight, and measures eleven feet by eleven feet. He loves watching TV, and the cartoon characters he calls friends, but he knows that nothing he sees on screen is truly real - only him, Ma and the things in Room. Until the day Ma admits that there's a world outside...

Born in 1969, Emma Donoghue is an Irish writer who lives in Canada. Her fiction includes the bestselling novel Slammerkin and her novels have been translated into thirty-nine languages.   Room, her seventh novel, was shortlisted for the 2010 Man Booker Prize, won the Irish Novel of the Year and the Rogers Writers’ Trust Fiction Prize and most recently won in the Caribbean and Canada Best Book category of the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize. Donoghue has also been shortlisted for the Galaxy International Author of the Year and is winner of the TV Book Club.  She lives in London, Ontario with Chris Roulston and their two children.

 

 

Aminatta Forna

The Memory of Love

Bloomsbury 

Adrian Lockheart is a psychologist escaping his life in England. Arriving in Freetown in the wake of civil war, he struggles with the intensity of the heat, dirt and dust, and with the secrets this country hides. Despite the gulf of experience and understanding between them, Adrian finds unexpected friendship in a young surgeon at the hospital, the charismatic Kai Mansaray, and begins to build a new life just as Kai makes plans to leave. 

In the hospital Adrian encounters an elderly and unwell man, Elias Cole, who is reflecting on his past, not all of it noble. Recorded in a series of notebooks are memories of his youth, the optimism of the first moon landings, and the details of an obsession: Saffia, a woman he loved, and Julius, her fiery, rebellious husband.  As their individual stories entwine, across two generations in a country torn apart by repression and war, some distances cannot be bridged.

Aminatta Forna was born in Scotland and raised in West Africa. Her first book, The Devil that Danced on the Water, was shortlisted for the Samuel Johnson Prize 2003. Her novel Ancestor Stones was winner of the 2008 Hurston/Wright Legacy Award, the Liberaturpreis in Germany, nominated for the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award and selected by the Washington Post as one of the most important books of 2006. In 2007, Vanity Fair named Aminatta as one of Africa's most promising new writers. Aminatta has also written for magazines and newspapers, radio and television, and presented television documentaries on Africa’s history and art.  She lives in London with her husband. The Memory of Love recently won the Africa Best Book category of the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize.

 

 

Emma Henderson

Grace Williams Says It Loud

Sceptre

This isn't an ordinary love story. But then Grace isn't an ordinary girl. 'Disgusting,' said the nurse. And when no more could be done, they put her away, aged eleven. On her first day at the Briar Mental Institute, Grace meets Daniel. He sees a different Grace: someone to share secrets and canoodle with, someone to fight for. Debonair Daniel, an epileptic who can who can type with his feet, fills Grace's head with tales from Paris and the world beyond.

Emma Henderson was born in 1958 and studied Modern Languages at Oxford and Yale. She taught English for more than a decade in London comprehensive schools and F.E. colleges, whilst having a family, then moved to France in 1999 to run a ski and snowboard lodge in the Alps. She returned to London in 2005 where she still lives, and in 2006 gained a MA, with distinction, in Creative Writing at Birkbeck.  Grace Williams Says It Loud was shortlisted for the Wellcome Trust Book Prize. Emma is currently writing her second novel.


Nicole Krauss

Great House

Viking

During the winter of 1972, a woman spends a single night with a young Chilean poet before he departs New York, leaving her his desk. It is the only time they ever meet. Two years later, he is arrested by Pinochet’s secret police and never seen again. Across the ocean, in the leafy suburbs of London, a man caring for his dying wife discovers a lock of hair among her papers that unravels a terrible secret. In Jerusalem, an antiques dealer has spent a lifetime reassembling his father’s study, plundered by the Nazis from Budapest in 1944; now only one item remains to be found.

Connecting these stories is a desk of many drawers that exerts a power over those who possess it or have given it away. As the narrators of Great House make their confessions, this desk comes finally to stand for all that has been taken from them, and all that binds them to what has disappeared.

Nicole Krauss is the author of Man Walks into a Room and the international bestseller, The History of Love. Published by Penguin in 2005, it has sold over 250,000 copies and was shortlisted for the Orange, Medicis and Femina Prizes, and was a Richard and Judy Book Club pick. Nicole Krauss was selected by the New Yorker as one of its prestigious '20 under 40' best young writers and her books have been translated into more than thirty-five languages. She lives in Brooklyn, New York.

 

Téa Obreht

The Tiger’s Wife

Weidenfeld & Nicolson

A tiger escapes from the local zoo, padding through the ruined streets and onwards, to a ridge above the Balkan village of Galina. His nocturnal visits hold the villagers in a terrified thrall. But for one boy, the tiger is a thing of magic - Shere Khan awoken from the pages of The Jungle Book.

Years later, in a Balkan country ravaged by conflict, Natalia, a young doctor, is visiting an orphanage when she receives word of her beloved grandfather’s death far from their home in mysterious circumstances. Remembering fragments of the stories her grandfather told her as a child, Natalia becomes convinced that he spent his last days searching for ‘the deathless man’ a vagabond who was said to be immortal. As Natalia struggles to understand why her grandfather, a deeply rational man, would go on such a far-fetched journey, she stumbles across a clue that leads her to the extraordinary story of the tiger’s wife.

Téa Obreht was born in 1985 in the former Yugoslavia and raised in Belgrade. In 1992 her family moved to Cyprus and then to Egypt, where she learned to speak and read English, eventually immigrating to the United States in 1997.  After graduating from the University of Southern California, Téa received her MFA in Fiction from the Creative Writing Program at Cornell University in 2009.  Téa was featured in The New Yorker's Top 20 Writers under 40 Fiction Issue (June 2010) and at 24, was the youngest on the list. Her short story, The Laugh, debuted in The Atlantic fiction issue and was then chosen for The Best American Short Stories 2010, a further short story, The Sentry, featured in the Guardian Summer Fiction Issue. Her journalism has appeared in Harper’s magazine and she lives in Ithaca, New York.

 

Kathleen Winter

Annabel

Jonathan Cape 

 

In 1968, into the beautiful, spare environment of remote coastal Labrador in the far north-east of Canada, a mysterious child is born: a baby who appears to be neither fully boy nor girl, but both at once.

Only three people share the secret – the baby’s parents, Jacinta and Treadway, and a trusted neighbour, Thomasina. Together the adults make a difficult decision: to go through surgery and raise the child as a boy named Wayne. But as Wayne grows up within the hyper-male hunting culture of his father, his shadow-self – a girl he thinks of as ‘Annabel’ – is never entirely extinguished, and indeed is secretly nurtured by the women in his life.

As Wayne approaches adulthood, and its emotional and physical demands, the woman inside him begins to cry out. The changes that follow are momentous not just for him, but for the three adults that have guarded his secret.

Kathleen Winter has written dramatic and documentary scripts for Sesame Street and CBC Television. Her first collection of short stories, boYs, was the winner of both the Winterset Award and the Metcalf-Rooke Award. A long-time resident of St John’s, Newfoundland, she now lives in Montreal.

Press release: Sponsorship & EntertainmentOrange Prize For Fiction

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