Monday, September 25, 2006

Murakami wins 2006 Frank O'Connor International Short Story Prize

Haruki Murakami
Blind Willow, Sleeping Woman (2006)

CONGRATULATIONS to Haruki Murakami for winning the second Frank O’Connor International Short Story Prize (the world’s richest short story prize at €50,000 for a collection of short stories published in English anywhere in the world) for his third collection of stories, Blind Willow, Sleeping Woman (2006). The jury hailed Murakami as “a master of prose fiction,” for he “writes with great integrity, unafraid of dealing with tough and difficult situations between people who constantly misunderstand each other.” They praised the “terrific sense of magic” of his “truly accomplished voice”, his “contemporary ability to create extended monologues of fear” and the way his stories push “deeper and deeper through layers of meaning”. “Long after reading his stories, the images and situations he constructs remain unforgettable ... His writing reminds us, ultimately, that the reader comes to published work in search of magic.” The other shortlisted books were Philip Ó Ceallaigh’s Notes from a Turkish Whorehouse (2006), Rachel Sherman’s The First Hurt (2006), Peter Stamm’s In Strange Gardens and Other Stories (2006), Rose Tremain’s The Darkness of Wallis Simpson (2005) and Samrat Upadhyay’s The Royal Ghosts (2006).

Blind Willow, Sleeping Woman (2006) / Haruki Murakami (trans. from the Japanese by Philip Gabriel and Jay Rubin)
Notes from a Turkish Whorehouse (2006) / Philip Ó Ceallaigh
The First Hurt (2006) / Rachel Sherman
In Strange Gardens and Other Stories (2006) / Peter Stamm (trans. from the German by Michael Hofmann)
The Darkness of Wallis Simpson (2005) / Rose Tremain
The Royal Ghosts (2006) / Samrat Upadhyay


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