AUTHOR Donal Ryan is among 13 writers to be longlisted for one of the world’s most prestigious literary awards, the Man Booker prize for his debut novel The Spinning Heart.
The 36-year-old Tipperary born author, who lives in Limerick, said “it has been amazing” to be on the list for the honour after he submitted the book to up to 50 publishers and agents, and received many rejections before it was taken on by Lilliput and Double-Day. He is one of just three Irish authors in the running for the prize.
“I was literally speechless [when I heard]. I was getting phone-calls from people and I couldn’t speak,” he said.
The Spinning Heart, which is built on 21 multiple and linked narratives in a small Irish town in the midst of the recession in 2010, also recently won the Bord Gais Energy Book of the Year award.
Donal, from Burgess in north Tipperary, scooped that award after being shortlisted alongside literary heavyweights, including John Banville, Edna O’Brien, and the late Maeve Binchy.
New York based Irish writer Colum McCann has also been longlisted for the Booker for his recent work Transatlantic, as has Colm Toibin for The Testament of Mary, after the judges reviewed some 150 books. The shortlist will be announced in September and the winner of the €58,000 prize will be announced on October 15.