2012 Awards Round-up (1): It Begins

I’ve started this year’s round-ups  much later than I had planned.  There will be regular monthly bulletins from now on.  The year has begun well.  In the order of winners, shortlists, longlists and news:

Sri Lankan author Shehan Karunatilaka was awarded the $ 50,000 DSC Prize for South Asian Literature 2012  for his novel, Chinaman which,  “explores cricket as a metaphor to uncover a lost life and a lost history. Chinaman skillfully uses sport and the notion of fair play to look at Sri Lanka in a fresh and exciting way”.  There were six books books on the shortlistHere is a link to an excerpt from Chinaman.  I really want to read this book.

Teju Cole has won the Hemingway/PEN award for his novel, Open City.  I just won this book in a contest and will finally get to read it.

Kaheld Mattawa has won the 2011 Saif Ghobash-Banipal Prize for Arabic Literary Translation for his translation of Adonis: Selected Poems (via Three Percent).  The runner-up is Barbara Romaine for her translation of Spectres by Radwa Ashour.  Maia Tabet was commended on her translation of White Masks by Elias Khoury.

The National (US) Book Critic Circle awards were presented on March 8, 2012.  The winners are:

  • Fiction:  Edith Pearlman for Binocular Vision: New & Selected Stories
  • Nonfiction: Maya Jasanoff for Liberty’s Exiles: American Loyalists in the Revolutionary World
  • Biography: John Lewis Gaddis for George F. Kennan: An American Life
  • Poetry Award: Laura Kasischke for Space, in Chains
  • Autobiography: Mira Bartók for The Memory Palace: A Memoir
  • Criticism:  Geoff Dyer for Otherwise Known as the Human Condition: Selected Essays and Reviews

The full list of the finalists can be viewed here.

Alex Miller has won the 2011 Costa Prize Book of the Year for his novel,  Pure.   

The 2011 Costa Prize Category award winners are:

  • Novel:  Pure by Alex Miller
  • First Novel:  Tiny Sunbirds by Christie Watson (set in the Niger Delta)
  • Poetry:  The Bees by Carol Ann Duffy
  • Biography: Now All Roads Leads to France: The Last Years of Edward Thomas by Matthew Hollis
  • Children’s Book:  Blood Red Road by Moira Young

The winners of the 43rd NAACP Image Awards for Literature are:

  • Fiction:  Say Amen, Again by Reshonda Tate Billinsgley
  • Non-Fiction:   The Wealth Cure: Putting Money in Its Place by Hill Harper
  • Debut Author:  The Strawberry Letter by Shirley Strawberry
  • Biography/Auto-Biography: My Song by Harry Belafonte
  • Poetry:  Afro Clouds and Nappy Rain:  The Curtis Brown Poems by James Golden
  • Children:  You Can Be A Friend  by Tony & Lauren Dungy (Authors), Ron Mazellan (Illustrator)
  • Youth/Teens:  Jesse Owens: I Always Loved Running by Jeff Burlingame


Nominees for Kenya’s Burt Award for African Literature 2012 are:

  • Edward Mwangi for The Delegates
  • Ngumi Kibera for The Devil’s Hill
  • Anthony Mugo for Never Say Die

Winners for this manuscript prize will be announced in September 2012.

The Shortlist for the International Prize for Arabic Literature 2012 was announced on January 11, 2012.  The list comprises:

  • The Vagrant  by Jabbour Douaihy (Lebanon)
  • Embrace on Brooklyn Bridge  by Ezzedine Choukri Fishere  (Egypt )
  • The Druze of Belgrade by Rabee Jaber (Lebanon)
  • The Unemployed by Nasser Iraq (Egypt)
  • Toy of Fire by Bachir Mefti (Algeria)
  • The Women of al-Basatin by Habib Selmi (Tunisia)

The winner will be announced on March 27, 2012.

Seven books made it on to the 2011 MAN Asian Literary Prize’s shortlist.  The are:

  • Dream of Ding Village by Yan Lianke
  • Please Look After Mom by Kyung-Sook Shin
  • The Wandering Falcon by Jamil Ahmad
  • The Sly Company of Those Who Care by Rahul Bhattachariya
  • River of Smoke by Amitav Ghosh
  • The Lake by Banana Yoshimoto
  • Rebirth by Jahnavi Barua

The winner will be announced in March.  For reviews, please see the wonderful work on the longlist by the Shadow MAN Asian Prize Jury.

The shortlist for the 2012 Charles Taylor Prize for Literary Non-fiction was announced on January 10th, 2012.  The writers and books on the list are:

  • Wade Davis, Into the Silence: The Great War, Mallory, and the Conquest of Everest
  • Charlotte Gill, Eating Dirt: Deep Forests, Big Timber, and Life with the Tree-Planting Tribe
  • JJ Lee, The Measure of a Man: The Story of a Father, a Son, and a Suit
  • Madeline Sonik, Afflictions & Departures: Essays
  • Andrew Westoll, The Chimps of Fauna Sanctuary: A Canadian Story of Resilience and Recovery

The winner will be announced on March 5th, 2012.

The 2011 finalists for The Story Prize are:

  • The Angel Esmeralda by Don DeLillo
  • We Others by Steven Millhauser
  • Binocular Vision by Edith Pearlman

The winner will be announced on March 21, 2012

The Mystery Writers of American have announced its nominees for the 2012 Edgar Awards. The entire list of 15 categories is can be viewed here.  The awards will be presented on April 26, 2012.

The finalists for the 2011 Los Angeles Times Book Prizes were announced on February 21, 2012.  There are five finalists in each of the 10 categories.  The shortlist for the Fiction category is:

  • Ghost Light by Joseph O’Connor
  • The Cat’s Table by Michael Ondaatje
  • The Buddha in the Attic by Julie Otsuka
  • Binocular Vision: New & Selected Stories  by Edith Pearlman
  • Luminarium by Alex Shakar

The prizes will be award on April 20, 2012.  Please click on the link above to read see the complete set of finalists.

The finalists for the 2012 PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction were announced on February 21, 2012.  They are:

  • Russell Banks for Lost Memory of Skin
  • Don DeLillo for The Angel Esmeralda: Nine Stories
  • Anita Desai for The Artist of Disappearance
  • Steven Millhauser for We Others: New and Selected Stories
  • Julie Otsuka for The Buddha in the Attic

The winner will be announced on March 26, 2012.


The shortlist  for 2011/2012 Sanlam Prize for Youth Literature is out. This prize requires authors to submit a story in which “hope plays a role”.  The English language shortlists:

  • Jenny Robson (Maun, Botswana)
  • Maya Fowler (Cape Town)
  • Carolyn Morton (Port Elizabeth)
  • Jayne Bauling (White River)
  • Neil Malherbe (Nelspruit)
  • Elizabeth Pienaar (Johannesburg)

The shortlists for other languages are available here.


The 15-book longlist for the Independent Foreign Fiction Prize 2012 was released on March 9, 2012.  Authors on the list include Murakami, Nadas, Oz, Eco and  Kyung-sook Shin.  A shortlist of six books will be announced on April 12, 2012.  I shall take more about this award in the coming days.

The 2012 OCM Bocas Prize for Caribbean Literature announced its longlist of ten books in February 2012:


  • The Twelve-Foot Neon Woman by Loretta Collins Klobah (Puerto Rico)
  • Tantie Diablesse by Fawzia Kane (Trinidad and Tobago)
  • This Strange Land by Shara McCallum (Jamaica/USA)


  • The Ladies Are Upstairs by Merle Collins (Grenada)
  • Near Open Water by Keith Jardim (Trinidad and Tobago)
  • Is Just A Movie by Earl Lovelace (Trinidad and Tobago)
  • Vital Signs by Tessa McWatt (Guyana/Canada)


  • Olympian: 75 Years of Trinidad and Tobago in Olympic Sport by Basil Ince (Trinidad and Tobago)
  • Colour Me English: Thoughts About Migrations and Belonging Before and After 9/11 by Caryl Phillips (St. Kitts/UK)
  • George Price: A Life Revealed by Godfrey P. Smith (Belize)

I’m always interested in books by Earl Lovelace and Merle Collins.  The  shortlist of category winners will be announced on March 16, 2012.

The 25-book longlist for the 2012 Best Translated Translated Book Awards (BTBA) was announced on February 28, 2012.  There are several books on the list that I’ve been wanting to read.  The 10-book shortlist will be announced on April 10, 2012.  Click on link above to see the full list.

The Orange Prize for Fiction announced its much-anticipated 20-book longlist on March 8, 2012. Authors on the list include Cynthia Ozick, Esi Edugyan, Ann Patchett, Emma Donoghue and Ali Smith.  It’s a strong longlist.  The shortlist will be announced on April 17, 2012.  


The Judging Panel for the Caine Prize was announced in February 2012.  It includes:

  • Bernardine Evaristo (Chair)
  • Maya Jaggi
  • Chirikure Chirikure
  • Samantha Pinto
  • Nima Elbagir

Shortlisted stories will be announced in May 2012.



  1. Basil Ince’s book, 75 Years of Trinidad and Tobago at the Olympic Games 1948-2010 is a must read. Written, as it is, about individual Caribbean athletes in separate chapters, as well as being interspersed with the historical, social and political happenings of the times, the book is an educational treasure. It is a “can’t-put-down.” acquisition. I understand that Dr. Ince’s latest book, Black Meteors is equally fascinating reading.


  2. I am meeting Lovelace later this month! (His friends with another Caribbean author who happens to be my professor so the class gets to have dinner with him!)
    I haven’t read his work though but given all the great feedback for Is Just a Movie, I am picking it up as soon as possible!


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