May 25, 2021
The winner of the 2021 DUBLIN Literary Award is Lost Children Archive by Valeria Luiselli. Irish author Colm Toibin, who presented the award to Luiselli, said
‘Lost Children Archive’ tells an old story, the one that Cervantes told . . . and Cormac McCarthy, the story of what happens to the human spirit on the road, how a long journey puts in jeopardy what was stable and agreed upon.
Luiselli has written a novel in which stories spiral. She has rendered her characters with astonishing grace and insight, and through them she has drawn a picture of what they have been driving towards throughout the book, the contested place, where the old rules do not apply, for which a new form of archive is needed.’
The DUBLIN Literary Award, established in 1994 and administered by Dublin City Libraries, invites over 400 library systems from 177 countries around the world to nominate the best titles of the year based on high literary merit. The longlist is made up of every nominated book, which you can find at the following link DUBLIN Literary Award Longlist
The 2021 shortlist, narrowed down to six titles, can be found in various formats at OPL as listed below.
In 2020 Ottawa Public Library’s small nominating committee, comprised of library staff and members of the community, nominated The Innocents by Michael Crummey. While we’re disappointed that our choice didn’t win, we still love this special book. As we wrote in our nomination:
The Innocents tells the devastating, thrilling story of a pair of orphans left to fend for themselves in the wilderness in 19th century Newfoundland. The novel’s strengths lie both in the vividly rendered details of daily labour and changing landscape through the seasonal cycles that mark Ada and Evered’s lives, and in the sensitive depiction of their relationship.