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NZ Authors on Int. Literary Prize List

New Zealand Authors Feature Strongly On Short List For International Literary Prize

Three well-known New Zealand authors feature on the shortlist for Best Book in the South Pacific & South East Asian Region of the Commonwealth Writers Prize. Featuring nine novels, this year's unusually long shortlist is a comment on the very high quality of entries says the convenor of the judging panel, Graham Beattie.

The finalists for Best Book, South Pacific & South East Asia Region are:

The Hamilton Case by Michelle de Kretser (Knopf Australia)

Burke's Soldier by Alan Atwood (Penguin Viking Australia)

The Scornful Moon by Maurice Gee (Penguin New Zealand)

Daylight by Elizabeth Knox (Victoria University Press, New Zealand)

My Life as a Fake by Peter Carey (Faber Australia)

Sky Dancer by Witi Ihimaera (Penguin, New Zealand)

The Point by Marion Halligan (Allen & Unwin, Australia)

Homecoming by Adib Khan (Flamingo, Australia)

Seven Types of Ambiguity by Elliot Perlman (Picador, Australia)

Two other New Zealand authors narrowly missed the cut for the shortlist - Catherine Chidgey for The Transformation and Fiona Kidman for Songs from the Violet Cafe.

The winners of the Best Book category and Best First Book category for the region will be decided when the judges, including convenor Graham Beattie from Auckland, Nor Faridah Manaf from Malaysia and Deborah Robertson from Australia, meet in Auckland from 20 February. These two winners will be included on an international shortlist for the overall prize.

The final judging of the Commonwealth Writers Prize by a panel comprising the chair-people from all four regions, including Beattie, will take place in Melbourne between 8 - 15 May as part of a week-long programme incorporating author readings, receptions and tours of regional Victoria, hosted by the State Library of Victoria.

Awarded annually, this major prize for fiction celebrates the outstanding literary talent that exists in many parts of the Commonwealth and its contribution to contemporary writing in English. This year there will be one award of £10,000 for the best book submitted and an award of £3,000 for the best first published book. In each of the four regions of the Commonwealth two prizes of £1,000 will be awarded: one for the best book and one for the best first published book.

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