Australian Author Richard Flanagan Wins Man Booker Prize for 2014
Best-selling Australian author Richard Flanagan has won the 2014 Man Booker Prize for his novel, The Narrow Road to the Deep North. The winner of the Man Booker award was announced on Tuesday evening in London.
Richard Flanagan’s novel ‘The Narrow Road to the Deep North’ tells the story of prisoners of war on the Burma railway. In describing Flanagan’s book the chair of judges, AC Grayling, said; ‘the two great themes from the origin of literature are love and war: this is a magnificent novel of love and war. Written in prose of extraordinary elegance and force, it bridges East and West, past and present, with a story of guilt and heroism.’
Richard Flanagan is the third Australian to win the prestigious award for fiction. Previous Australian authors who have won include:
1. Thomas Kenneally for Schindler’s Ark in 1982
2. Peter Carey for Oscar & Lucinda, 1988, and The True History of the Kelly Gang in 2001
Along with the great recognition and prestige of winning this award there is also a financial reward of £50,000 that Richard Flanagan will receive.
Other finalists for the prize include:
1. Howard Jacobson (J)
2. Neel Mukherjee (The Lives of Others)
3. Ali Smith (How to be Both)
4. Joshua Ferris (To Rise Again at a Decent Hour)
5. Karen Joy Fowler (We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves).
Flanagan said it was an extraordinary honour and he was astonished with his win. ‘I was glad to be on the long list, I was shocked to be on the long list, I was delighted to be on the short list. A writer’s life is to be defeated by ever greater things, it is a journey into humility and you do not expect these strokes of good fortune to come your way.
‘You’re just grateful to be allowed to be back at the table the next day writing.
‘I’m very grateful for this, it is one of the greatest honours that can be accorded in the world of literature but I didn’t expect it.’