Entertainment & Arts

Irish author Kevin Barry wins Impac literary award

Kevin Barry with his book
Image caption The novel is set in the west of Ireland in 2053

Irish author Kevin Barry has won the 100,000 euros (£81,000) International Impac Dublin Literary Award.

Barry, who is originally from Limerick and now lives in Sligo, won for his debut novel, City of Bohane.

"Kevin Barry's Ireland of 2053 is a place you may not want to be alive in, but you'll certainly relish reading about," commented the judges.

The prize is open to novels in any language which have been published in, or translated into, English.

Barry, the author of two award-winning short story collections, beat competition from 153 titles, nominated by 160 libraries from 44 countries.

'Special' award

"The fact that this award originates with the libraries is what makes it very special for me - libraries are where we learn that we can live our lives through books," said Barry.

He is the third Irish author to win the prize, which is organised by Dublin city libraries on behalf of Dublin City Council.

It was awarded to Colm Toibin in 2006 for The Master, and to Colum McCann in 2011 for Let the Great World Spin.

Other previous winners include Even the Dogs by Jon McGregor in 2012 and The Twin by Gerbrand Bakker 2010.

"I'm thrilled to see an Irish author of such immense talent take home this year's award," said the Lord Mayor and patron of the award, Naoise O Muiri.

"City of Bohane is a vivid, atmospheric portrayal of a city in the west of Ireland set in the future but mired in the past.

"The highly original cast of characters are at once flamboyant and malevolent, speaking in a vernacular like no other," he added.

More on this story

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites