#Open journalism No news is bad news

Your contributions will help us continue to deliver the stories that are important to you

Support The Journal
Dublin: 3°C Thursday 20 January 2022

These are the best books in Ireland right now...

Drumroll, please.

CLEAR SOME SPACE on your bookshelves, because the best books in Ireland right now have been named.

This evening saw the writers of this year’s best fiction, non-fiction, cookbooks and other literary gems being awarded at the Bord Gáis Energy Irish Book Awards 2014.

The winners

BOD Source: Patrick Bolger

Renowned contemporary Irish poet Paul Durcan was presented with the Bob Hughes Lifetime Achievement Award 2014 by Paula Meehan, Ireland Professor of Poetry, while bestselling author Jeffrey Archer was presented with the inaugural International Recognition Award by broadcaster George Hook.

Academy St by first time novelist Mary Costello beat off stiff competition in the Eason Novel of the Year category which featured literary heavyweights John Boyne, David Mitchell, Colm Tóibín, Joseph O’ Conor and John Kelly.

Majella O Donnell, businesswoman and wi Winner Majella O'Donnell Source: Andres Poveda

The star-studded awards ceremony took place in the Dublin’s Double Tree Hilton and was attended by Roddy Doyle, Damien Dempsey, Anthony ‘Dalo’ Daly, Rachel and Isaac Allen, Majella and Daniel O’ Donnell, Paul Galvin and Louise Duffy, actor and writer Eoin Macken, David and Stephen Flynn (the Happy Pear twins), Susan Jane White, John Kelly, Donal Ryan and Kevin Dundon.

The event was hosted by RTE’s Keelin Shanley and awards were presented by John Murray from RTE Radio 1, TV presenters Sinead Desmond and Brendan O’ Connor, TheJournal.ie editor Susan Daly, and children’s writer Eoin Colfer.

The full list of winners

Eason Novel of the Year:

  • Academy St by Mary Costello (Canongate)

Sunday Independent Newcomer of the Year:

  • Only Ever Yours by Louise O’Neill (Quercus)

RTÉ Radio 1’s John Murray Show Listeners’ Choice Award:

  • It’s All in the Head by Majella O’Donnell (Simon &Schuster)

Ireland AM Crime Fiction Book of the Year:

  • Unravelling Oliver by Liz Nugent (Penguin Ireland)

Avonmore Cookbook of the Year:

  • The Nation’s Favourite Food Fast by Neven Maguire (Gill &Macmillan)

National Book Tokens Non-Fiction Book of the Year:

  • The Life and Loves of a He Devil by Graham Norton (Hodder & Stoughton)

Books Are My Bag Popular Fiction Book of the Year:

  • The Year I Met You by Cecelia Ahern (HarperCollins)

Bord Gáis Energy Sports Book of the Year:

  • The Test by Brian O’Driscoll (Penguin Ireland)

TheJournal.ie Best Irish Published Book of the Year:

  • Dubliners 100: by Thomas Morris (Tramp Press)

Specsavers Children’s Book of the Year:


  • Shh! We Have a Plan by Chris Haughton (Walker Books)


  • Moone Boy by Chris O’Dowd and Nick Vincent Murphy (Macmillan Children’s Books)

Writing.ie Short Story of the Year:

  • Rest Day by John Boyne (The Irish Times)

Chairman of the Bord Gáis Energy Irish Book Awards, John Treacy, said:

These fantastic award winners represent the very best Irish books published this year. They reflect a highly vibrant and creative community and are a wonderful example of Irish writing and publishing at its very best.

David Kirwan, Managing Director at Bord Gáis Energy said “these awards celebrate and promote the indigenous jewel that is Irish writing”.


We’ve been interviewing and writing about some of the nominees (some of whom ended up being winners), which you can find here:

From today, the public can vote for their overall ‘Bord Gáis Energy Book of the Year’ by going to www.bgeirishbookawards.ie. Voting is open until midnight on Thursday 4 December.

Interviews with the winners by RTÉ’s Evelyn O’Rourke, along with highlights from the awards ceremony, will be aired on RTE Television on Saturday 29 November.

Read: What’s been your favourite Irish book this year?>

Read:These are the 6 nominees for Irish Sports Book of the Year 2014

Read: Ireland’s ‘poet of the people’ honoured for a lifetime’s great work>

Read next: