Wednesday, 24 Jul 2019 | 21 Dhul Qidah 1440
Omani author first in Gulf to be shortlisted for literary prize

Omani author first in Gulf to be shortlisted for literary prize

Jokha’s achievement is extraordinary as she is the first writer from the Gulf to have been longlisted. And, obtaining shortlisted is unprecedented for any writer from the Gulf.

This year’s Man Booker International Prize shortlist functions six books translated from 5 languages, hailing from 5 nations and 3 continents, but only 1 male writer alongside 5 female authors and an all-female list of translators.

The shortlist of the six books in contention, which celebrates the finest operates of translated fiction from about the planet, was revealed on Tuesday, in London. The £50,000 prize for the winning book, which will be announced on May 21, will be divided equally among its author and translator.

“We’re thrilled that Celestial Bodies
 by Jokha Alharthi, as translated by Marilyn Booth, has been shortlisted for the Man Booker International Prize for 2019,” mentioned Sandstone Press, the publisher.

Jokha was quoted as saying in an interview by Man Group, “It feels like a wonderful opportunity to share my inner world with the whole world. I hope this helps international readers discover that Oman has an active and talented writing community which lives and work for its art. These writers take on sacrifices and struggles and find joy in writing, or in art, much the same way as anywhere else. This is something the whole world has in common.”

This year’s stories contain the pilgrimage of a lecturer on beard fashions more than the pine islands of Matsushima, a tale of Colombian conspiracy theories, and an environmental whodunnit with a cast of eccentric characters.

Family connections and history are also present in the coming-of-age account of 3 Omani sisters, the story of 3 youngsters of ex-militants overcoming Chile’s complicated previous, and an evocative narrative of France from 1941 to 2006 which blends the private and the collective to present memories of a generation.

Information Source: Muscat Daily

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