Wales Book of the Year 2009 Longlists Announced

The longlists for The Wales Book of the Year 2009 – the premier award for Welsh writing – were announced today, Wednesday 22 April 2009 at The Management Centre, Bangor Business School, North Wales. The awards, worth £10,000 to the winners, are presented to the best books of the year in the English and Welsh language.

The English language judges are poet, critic and lecturer at the University of Wales, Tiffany Atkinson; poet, essayist and former editor of Planet, John Barnie and broadcaster and travel writer Mike Parker (Chair).

The 2009 English-language longlist features a diverse collection of voices and genres from poetry and short stories to novels and criticism. Independent publishers are particularly well represented with eight out of the ten books on the list.

The list includes some of Wales’s best known authors as well as up and coming new talents. Former Wales Book of the Year winner (1993 and 2006) Robert Minhinnick has been chosen for his collection of poems, alongside renowned Welsh poets Matthew Francis and Sheenagh Pugh andyoung poets Zoe Skoulding and Samantha Wynne Rhydderch. Joe Dunthorne and Stephen May compete with debut novels about adolescence, while Deborah Kay Davies and Gee Williams are featured for their short story collections. The critic and historian Dai Smith is nominated for his acclaimed biography of Wales’ greatest cultural thinker, the author Raymond Williams.