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Weekly Roundup: The Orange Prize for Fiction winner announced

Weekly Roundup: The Orange Prize for Fiction winner announced

The winner of the Orange Prize for Fiction was announced this week, with debut author Madeline Miller winning the award for her novel The Song of Achilles.

This was the second year-running that a debut novel has won the prize, and Miller beat competition from 2007 Man Booker Prize-winning Anne Enright as well as Esi Edugyan who made the 2011 shortlist for Half Blood Blues, to scoop the £30,000 prize money.

Chair of the judges Joanna Trollope called The Song of Achilles, “a more than worthy winner—original, passionate, inventive and uplifting”. Take a look at the Orange Prize website for more news on this year’s winner as the rest of the shortlist.

Anne Enright was also interviewed this week by PRX in its New Letters on the Air podcast. Enright talks about “her dark but humorous approach to writing about love, desire, death and family, and explains how having children helped organize her writing life.”

Meanwhile, the BBC’s World Book Club has followed on from Howard Jacobson’s 2010 Man Booker Prize-winning The Finkler Question and is now discussing The Shadow Lines by Amitav Ghosh, who was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize in 2008 for Sea of Poppies.

Speaking of Howard Jacobson, he appeared at Royal Holloway, University of London this week where he was quizzed by staff and students about the secret of becoming a successful author in the final event of the year in its Lunchtime Reading Series. Jacobson this week also joined the New College of the Humanities as visiting professor.

One of Jacobson’s favourite novelists is the winner of the 2011 Man Booker International Prize, Philip Roth. Roth appeared on the Web of Stories website recently, where he talks about various subjects including his happy childhood, discovering the world of literature and family life.

Finally, three-time Man Booker Prize nominated Sebastian Barry was given an honorary doctorate in literature from NUI Galway this week. Congratulations to him on a well-deserved award.

Sebastian Barry, 2008 Man Booker Prize
Sebastian Barry, 2008 Man Booker Prize