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American author Emily Ruskovich wins Dublin literary award worth €100,000

The International Dublin Literary Award is organised and sponsored by Dublin City Council.

Emily Ruskovich
Emily Ruskovich
Image: Conor McCabe Photography

AMERICAN AUTHOR EMILY Ruskovich has won the 2019 International Dublin Literary Award and €100,000 for her novel Idaho. 

The award is organised and sponsored by Dublin City Council and at €100,000 is the world’s largest prize for a single novel published in English. 

Ruskovich is the fourth American author to win the prize in its 24-year history. 

The winner was announced at a ceremony in Dublin’s Mansion House this evening. The award receives its nominations from public libraries in cities around the world and recognises both writers and translators. 

Emily Ruskovich grew up in the Idaho Panhandle, on Hoodoo Mountain. 

A winner of a 2015 O Henry Award and a graduate of the Iowa Writer’s Workshop, she now teaches creative writing in the MFA programme at Boise State University in the US. She lives in Idaho City with her husband and baby daughter.

Ruskovich’s winning novel was chosen from a total of 141 titles, nominated by libraries in 115 cities across 41 countries. 

It was first published by Chatto & Windus in the UK and by Random House in the US.

Another nine novels from France, Ireland, Pakistan, the UK and the USA were shortlisted for the prize. One of the novels, Compass by Mathias Énard, was translated from French by Charlotte Mandell.

“I cannot express how grateful I am to be the recipient of this astonishingly generous award. It is difficult to know how to respond to the magnitude of this kindness that has been so suddenly bestowed upon me,” Ruskovich said.

I feel shocked. I feel humbled. I feel overwhelmed with the enormity of my gratitude.

“I am especially honoured because of the admiration that I feel for the other finalists, authors from all over the world who are all doing such crucial and beautiful work. Seeing my name beside theirs when the shortlist was announced – that alone was one of the greatest honours of my career.”

Copies of the winning novel, the shortlisted books and the full list of novels nominated for the 2019 award are available to borrow from Dublin public libraries.

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