Scottish Mortgage Investment Trust Book Awards 2011
Now in it’s 39th year, the awards are sponsored by the Scottish Mortgage Investment Trust in partnership with Creative Scotland.
The purpose of the awards is to recognise and reward Scottish literary excellence in four categories - Fiction, Poetry, Non-Fiction and First Book. At Creative Scotland we do all we can to support new and established artists, and this array of talent is clear in this year's longlisted titles.
From the longlisted books, the judges compile a shortlist comprising of one winner from each of the four categories, each of whom will win £5,000. The four authors then go on to compete to have their book named Scottish Mortgage Investment Trust Book of the Year and win a further £25,000.
|FICTION||Leila Aboulela, Lyrics Alley (Weidenfeld & Nicolson)|
In Lyrics Alley, Leila Aboulela takes readers to the heart of what it means to have faith in an unforgiving world. Moving from the alleys of Sudan to cosmopolitan Cairo and a decimated post-colonial Britain, this sweeping tale of desire and loss, faith, despair, and reconciliationis one of the most accomplished and evocative portraits ever written of Sudanese society at the time of independence.
"The characters are astutely shaded, and their varying relations to Islam are beautifully rendered." – The Guardian
|NON-FICTION||Jackie Kay, Red Dust Road (Picador)|
From the moment when, as a little girl, she realizes that her skin is a different colour from that of her beloved mum and dad, to the tracing and finding of her birth parents, her Highland mother and Nigerian father, the journey that Jackie Kay undertakes in Red Dust Road is full of unexpected twists, turns and deep emotions.
"Red Dust Road is a fantastic, probing and heart-warming read" - The Independant
|POETRY||Stewart Conn, The Breakfast Room (Bloodaxe)|
The waif-like figure peering from Bonnard's "The Breakfast Room" instils a sense of mystery and marginality in the title poem of Stewart Conn's The Breakfast Room. Among other portents of transience in his latest collection are two briefly glimpsed duck shooters. Responses to music, tinged with warmth and humour, highlight the redeeming power of art. The book concludes with a group of love poems imbued with tenderness and a treasuring of the here and now.
"Characteristically restrained, subtly lyrical and filled with gentle humour ... a beautiful and moving collection." — The Sunday Herald
|FIRST BOOK||Sue Peebles, The Death of Lomond Freil (Vintage)|
In Sue Peebles novel The Death of Lomond Friel, Rosie, a successful radio presenter, hears that her father has had a stroke she finds herself making reckless decisions that make little sense to those around her. As she strives towards building some kind of future for herself and her father, he quietly plots his own death. Set on the east coast of Scotland, the novel covers events in the weeks following the stroke and the lives of this small cast of captivating but very real characters.
"Peebles’s prose is consistently startling – there isn’t an ordinary or hackneyed sentence or sentiment in the book." – The Telegraph
(Credits from top (c) Graham Jepson, Walter Neilson, Colin Hattersley & Ian Rutherford)
Cast Your Vote
This year we are pleased to announce that the awards have a brand-new component – you! For the first time in the history of the awards, readers and book lovers from across the country will have a role in choosing the Scottish Mortgage Investment Trust Book of the Year in a public vote that begins on the 16 May and ends on 31 July 2011.
‘This is a fantastic selection of books. Our aim is to encourage people to read, discuss and get involved with the shortlisted books. By including a public vote, we hope that people will feel inspired to read writers and books that are new to them.’ – Venu Dhupa, Director of Creative Development at Creative Scotland.
To cast your vote you can visit the brand new Book Awards Website. The winner will be decided using a combination of the judges’ scores and the public vote and will be announced at the Edinburgh International Book Festival in August.
In another first, the awards have teamed up with the Royal National Institute for the Blind to have the four category winning books converted to formats suitable for the visually impaired. Visit their Book Site to find out more details.
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