WINNING WORDSMITHS Mike McCormack and Elizabeth Reapy.
Mike McCormack, Elizabeth Reapy honoured at Bord Gáis Energy Irish Book Awards
Ciara Galvin and Ciara Moynihan
Louisburgh author Mike McCormack’s book Solar Bones has been named the The Eason Book Club Novel of the Year at the 2016 Bord Gáis Energy Irish Book Awards. The announcement comes just one week after Solar Bones won this year’s Goldsmiths Prize in London.
Another Mayo writer, Elizabeth (EM) Reapy from Claremorris, won The Sunday Independent Newcomer of the Year for her book Red Dirt. Described as ‘thought-provoking’, ‘vibrant’ and a novel that ‘grips the reader from the start’, the book has been cited as a must read, while Reapy’s writing style has been described as ‘highly impressive’.
Red Dirt tells the story of three young backpackers in Australia. Having travelled around the vast continent herself, Reapy gives a detailed account of what life can be like navigating the all kinds of backpacker rites of passage, from the house parties of Sydney to the fruit factories of the outback.
Published by independent Irish publisher Tramp Press, Solar Bones revolves around the story of its narrator Marcus Conway, a county engineer living in Louisburgh. Personal relationships are explored against a background of economic collapse, illness, career ennui and the vagaries of local politics. The book has been characterised as ‘a single sentence’ novel, as the text contains no full stops. However, the rhythm of the words and sentences forms its own natural punctuation in this funny, moving and meditative work.
Now in its eleventh year, the Irish Book Awards ceremony was held in Dublin last night (Wednesday) and presented by Keelin Shanley. Other authors to take home awards include Graham Norton, Paul O’Connell, Paul Howard, Sinéad Gleeson and Marian Keyes.
The public can now vote for their overall ‘Bord Gáis Energy Book of the Year’ by going to www.bgeirishbookawards.ie.