Michael Thomas, premio IMPAC
El prestigioso premio IMPAC nuevamente da un golpe y patea el tablero. El ganador de este premio, que tiene más de cien candidatos elegidos por librerías del mundo y luego una shortlist escogida por un jurado, fue un debutante: Michael Thomas con Man Gone Down. 100,000 euros van para él. Dice la nota en The Guardian:
A debut novelist who says he's never really had a proper job has won the world's richest literary award. American writer Michael Thomas beat authors including Philip Roth, Doris Lessing and Joyce Carol Oates to take the €100,000 (£85,000) Impac Dublin prize with his debut novel, Man Gone Down. "I'm stunned," Thomas said today, in Dublin for the prize ceremony from his home town of New York. "I had a hard time believing I'd made the shortlist – or the longlist, for that matter – so I'm still waiting for the punch line." Currently a professor at Hunter College in New York, he said he'd use his winnings to "pay some bills". "It's too late to bet on myself [winning]," he said. "I've had an interesting life up until now, so I may get a little more conservative. I've got three kids, a mortgage, a half-built house ..." Man Gone Down is a stream-of-consciousness narrative by a black man from Boston, married to a white woman with whom he has three children. The story stretches over a four-day period, with the unnamed narrator on the eve of his 35th birthday, broke and estranged from his family, with just four days to find the money to keep his family afloat. Described by the judging panel as an "extraordinary novel ... from a writer of enthralling voice and startling insight", Thomas said he'd written it at a time when he was "feeling a little desperate" himself. It beat seven other shortlisted novels – including Mohsin Hamid's The Reluctant Fundamentalist, Junot Díaz's Pulitzer-winning The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao and Indra Sinha's Booker-shortlisted Animal's People - and an international longlist of 147 titles, nominated by libraries around the world, to take the prize. "We never know his name. But the African-American protagonist of Michael Thomas's masterful debut, Man Gone Down, will stay with readers for a long time," said the panel of judges, which included the novelists Rachel Billington and Timothy Taylor. "Tuned urgently to the way we live now, [Man Gone Down] is a novel brilliant in its scope and energy, and deeply moving in its human warmth."
La shortlist completa incluyó, además del ganador, a: The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Díaz; The Burnt-Out Town of Miracles by Roy Jacobsen, in translation; Ravel by Jean Echenoz, in translation; Animal’s People by Indra Sinha; The Reluctant Fundamentalist by Mohsin Hamid; The Archivist’s Story by Travis Holland and The Indian Clerk by David Leavitt.