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Patricia Grace wins US$30,000 literary award

Penguin Books (N.Z.) Limited

News Release
Tuesday 23rd October 2001
for immediate release


Patricia Grace wins US$30,000 literary award

Patricia Grace’s latest novel, Dogside Story, has won the 2001 Kiriyama Pacific Rim Book Prize. Patricia Grace will share the US$30,000 prize with American journalist Peter Hessler for his memoir River Town: Two Years on the Yangtze. The award was announced at the 14th Annual Vancouver International Writers Festival in Canada.

This announcement continues the international acclaim for Patricia Grace’s Dogside Story, which was longlisted for the prestigious Booker Prize in August this year.

This stunning story set in a Maori coastal community is both a literary novel and a gripping page-turning read. With great warmth, compassion and humour Patricia Grace writes of the power of the land, the strength of the whanau and the humour and aroha of the community as life preserving factors

The ultimate goal of the Kiriyama Prize is to promote books that will contribute to the greater understanding and cooperation among peoples and nations of the Pacific Rim.

“The need for greater cultural understanding and tolerance has never been clearer than it has been in recent weeks,” says Peter J. Coughlan, president of the Kiryiama Pacfic Rim Institute (KPRI). “I believe that both of the outstanding books our Judges chose this year will further mutual understanding among peoples and nations of the Pacific Rim and South East Asia,” Coughlan adds.

Penguin Books NZ, Patricia Grace’s publisher since the mid-1980s, offers Patricia their warmest congratulations.

“This is the year in which Patricia Grace has received the international recognition that she so richly deserves. Dogside Story is a wonderful novel which clearly speaks to a wider audience about circumstances of indigenous peoples in many parts of the Pacific,” says Penguin Books NZ Publishing Director, Geoff Walker.

Dogside Story has also been published in Britain and the United States. Penguin Books NZ has received interest in foreign rights from many foreign language publishers.

Last years fiction winner was Michael Ondaatje’s Anil’s Ghost and the nonfiction prize went to Michael David Kwan for Things That Must Not Be Forgotten

The Kiriyama Award was established in 1996 by renowned Japanese philanthropist Reverend Seiyu Kiriyama. Kiriyama witnessed first hand the devastation caused in the Pacific region during World War II and became convinced that it was necessary for people of the region to understand one another better to bring about lasting peace. He founded Kiriyama Pacific Rim Foundation of which the Kiriyama Prize is a part.

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