Back in August it was announced that a New Academy had been created to award an alternative Nobel Prize for Literature after the Swedish Academy was caught in a mire of controversy amid a rape scandal. The New Academy was put together by more than a hundred important cultural figures, journalists, writers and authors to honour literary greats with a new prize.
In August four authors were shortlisted, Haruki Murakami of Japan, who soon withdrew himself from the competition, Vietnamese-Canadian writer Kim Thúy; Maryse Condé of Guadeloupe; and British author Neil Gaiman who is based in the USA.
It was announced that on 12th October the winner would be announced and now it’s announced that Maryse Conde will collect the alternative Nobel Prize in an award ceremony in December.
Conde is one of the Caribbean’s most renowned authors and said she was ‘very happy and proud’ to win the alternative prize. The author will win around £87,000 raised from crowdfunding and donations and will receive the prize at a ceremony on 9th December. Conde has written more than twenty novels and this prize is likely to raise her exposure further. Below we have listed Maryse Conde’s most notable works.
This year’s entries were shortlisted to the following:
The all-male group nominated for their strange or gross depictions of sex included Gerard Woodward, William Wall, James Frey, and a particularly rapey scene written by Haruki Murakami (dude, gross, don’t do that).
The winner was announced at a lavish ceremony hosted by retro pop star Kim Wilde at the In & Out (Naval & Military) Club in London.
James Frey and his book Katerina won with his awkward and cringe-worthy passage describing… Well, you know.
Last year’s winner was Christopher Bollen, an American novelist whose passage describing the protagonist’s love interest is both weird and utterly unsexy:
“She covers her breasts with her swimsuit. The rest of her remains so delectably exposed. The skin along her arms and shoulders are different shades of tan like water stains in a bathtub. Her face and vagina are competing for my attention, so I glance down at the billiard rack of my penis and testicles.”
The award is administered by the Children’s Book Circle and the organisation chose Morpurgo because of how he has inspired a deep passion throughout his career.
Now three years later, journalist Philippe Lancon who was injured in the deadly attacks has won the Femina Prize, a prestigious award for his book, Le Lambeau, an account of the attack and how it has affected Lancon’s life.
This year the award has added a new category for poetry, alongside the seven existing categories. Books are My Bag asked you to vote and you did so in your thousands and the winners are now in for the Books are My Bag Readers Awards, sponsored by National Book Tokens.