- 13 Jun 19
American author Emily Rushovich has won the 2019 International Dublin Literary Award and €100,000 for her novel Idaho.
The Dublin Literary Award is organised and sponsored by Dublin City Council and, with its prize money worth €100,000, it's the world’s largest prize for a single novel published in English.
Idaho is Ruskovich's debut novel. It was chosen from a total of 141 titles, nominated by libraries in 115 cities across 41 countries.
The win means that Ruskovich is the fourth American author to win the prize in its 24-year history.
Speaking about her win, Ruskovich said: "I cannot express how grateful I am to be the recipient of this astonishingly generous award. It is difficult to know how to respond to the magnitude of this kindness that has been so suddenly bestowed upon me.
"I feel shocked. I feel humbled. I feel overwhelmed with the enormity of my gratitude. I am especially honoured because of the admiration that I feel for the other finalists, authors from all over the world who are all doing such crucial and beautiful work.
"Seeing my name beside theirs when the shortlist was announced that alone was one of the greatest honours of my career."
The descrption of Idaho reads: "One hot August day a family drives to a mountain clearing to collect birch wood. Jenny, the mother, is in charge of lopping any small limbs off the logs with a hatchet. Wade, the father, does the stacking. The two daughters, June and May, aged nine and six, drink lemonade, swat away horseflies, bicker, sing snatches of songs as they while away the time. But then something unimaginably shocking happens, an act so extreme it will scatter the family in every different direction."
Bernard McLaverty's Midwinter Break and Sally Rooney's Conversations With Friends were among the Irish titles nominated for the award this year, while former Man Booker Prize winner George Saunders was also on the shortlist for his novel Lincoln In The Bardo.