PAUL MURRAY has won the Eason Novel of the Year Award at the An Post Book Awards 2023.
The Dubliner takes the title for his book The Bee Sting, which is also shortlisted for the Booker Prize, with the winner due to be announced on Sunday.
His tragicomic tale of the life of one Irish family follows his critically acclaimed 2010 novel Skippy Dies, which also made the Booker Prize longlist, and The Mark and the Void in 2015, which won the Bollinger Everyman Wodehouse Prize the following year.
Following his win at the awards ceremony held at Dublin's Convention Centre last night, the author said it was a “dream come true”.
"What a wonderful honour, I mean the shortlist this year was just out the door, the talent that we have in this country is astonishing, it is really world class," he said.
He is now due to travel to London for the Booker Prize Ceremony this weekend.
"This is probably the craziest week of my life, two award ceremonies, that is not a typical week for me,” he admitted.
Authors Róise Ní Bhaoill, Roz Purcell, Mark O’Connell, Sophie White, Katriona O’Sullivan, Colin Walsh and Sarah Binchy were all among the An Post Book Award winners
While the Halfway up the Stairs bookshop in Greystones, Co. Wicklow claimed the An Post Bookshop of the Year title.
Katriona O’Sullivan took home two prizes last night, with her debut title Poor claiming the Bookselling Ireland Biography of the Year Award as well as The Last Word Listeners’ Choice Award.
The book documents Ms O'Sullivan's life story and reveals how she went from living in poverty and homelessness to becoming an award-winning lecturer whose work explores barriers to education.
Novelist Liz Nugent won her fifth Irish Book Award as her novel Strange Sally Diamond won the Irish Independent Crime Fiction Book of the Year.
"It feels absolutely bonkers," Ms Nugent said.
First awarded in 2006, the An Post Irish Book Awards celebrate and promote Irish writing to the widest range of readers possible.
Brenden Corbett, Chairperson of the An Post Irish Book Awards, explained: “The An Post Irish Book Awards has established itself as a highlight of the Irish literary calendar and we are immensely proud of what we’ve achieved through a broad coalition of readers, writers, publishers, sponsors, booksellers and librarians.”
Regarding their 2023 event, he added: “Many Irish books have been published during the last year, not only by established writers but also by a number of incredibly talented newcomers who are a wonderful addition to the Irish literary scene.
“We are delighted to congratulate all of this year’s winners of the An Post Irish Book Awards.”
Full list of winners for the An Post Irish Book Awards 2023:
Eason Novel of the Year
The Bee Sting – Paul Murray
TheJournal.ie Best Irish-Published Book of the Year
Sunday Miscellany: A Selection 2018 - 2023 – Edited by Sarah Binchy
Bookselling Ireland Biography of the Year
Poor – Katriona O’Sullivan
Cookbook of the Year
Flavour – Mark Moriarty, photography by Cliodhna Prendergast
Bookstation Lifestyle Book of the Year
The Hike Life - Roz Purcell
Dubray Non-Fiction Book of the Year
A Thread of Violence – Mark O’Connell
Eason Sports Book of the Year
The Grass Ceiling – Eimear Ryan
Library Association of Ireland Author of the Year
Irish Independent Crime Fiction Book of the Year
Strange Sally Diamond - Liz Nugent
Sunday Independent Newcomer of the Year
Kala – Colin Walsh
National Book Tokens Popular Fiction Book of the Year
My Hot Friend – Sophie White
Foras na Gaeilge Irish Language Fiction Book of the Year Award
Imram agus Scéalta Eile – Róise Ní Bhaoill
The Last Word Listeners’ Choice Award
Poor – Katriona O’Sullivan
New Voices: The An Post Writing Prize
The Border / Кордон - Valeriia Shmyrova
International Education Services Teen and Young Adult Book of the Year, in honour of John Treacy
Black and Irish: Legends, Trailblazers and Everyday Heroes – Leon Diop and Briana Fitzsimons, illustrated by Jessica Louis
Specsavers Children’s Book of the Year – Junior
The President’s Dog – Peter Donnelly
Specsavers Children’s Book of the Year – Senior
I Am The Wind: Irish Poems for Children Everywhere – Edited by Lucinda Jacob and Sarah Webb, illustrated by Ashwin Chacko
Writing.ie Short Story of the Year
Such A Pretty Face – Moïra Fowley
Listowel Writers’ Week Poem of the Year
Vectors in Kabul – Mary O’Donnell
An Post Bookshop of the Year
Halfway up the Stairs – Greystones, Co. Wicklow