Irish writer Colm Tóibín to be honoured with the Bob Hughes Lifetime Achievement Award at the An Post Irish Book Awards 2019

  • Tóibín’s literary career spans three decades and has delivered nine novels, two short story collections and 20 books of travel, criticism, essays and anthologies
  • Tóibín will be honoured at major literary event on 20 November which will celebrate Irish writing across 16 categories

The An Post Irish Book Awards is delighted to announce that Irish writer Colm Toibin is the recipient of this year’s ‘Bob Hughes Lifetime Achievement Award’. The award will be announced at the annual Awards dinner in Dublin on 20th November in the presence of the Irish literary industry.

Colm Toibin will join a host of other distinguished recipients of the Lifetime Achievement Award including Thomas Kinsella, John McGahern, John Montague, J.P. Donleavy, Paul Durcan, John Banville, Seamus Heaney, Maeve Binchy, Edna O’Brien, Jennifer Johnston, William Trevor and Eavan Boland, all of whom have previously received the ‘Bob Hughes Lifetime Achievement Award.’

Colm Tóibín has occupied a central position in the cultural life of Ireland for over three decades. From the pioneering journalism of Magill in the 1980s, to his steady ascent to the pinnacle of Irish literature, and on through his distinguished career in US academia, he has remained a quintessentially Irish writer greatly beloved in his own country for his work, his intellect, his wit and his warm disposition.

In a literary career that has delivered nine novels, two short story collections and going on twenty books of travel, criticism, essays and anthologies, Tóibín has been in the van of Ireland’s contemporary literary renaissance and Irish booksellers owe as much to Colm Tóibín as to any other writer.

Maria Dickenson, Chairperson of the An Post Irish Book Awards, says: “Booksellers, like readers and critics, have favourite writers. Any book sold keeps Yeats’s “greasy till” chiming but there are certain writers whose work booksellers actively enjoy hand-selling to their customers. Booksellers warm to authors who fulfil the peripheral demands of public profile and trade interaction with good grace. It is those good friends of the book trade that our Lifetime Achievement Award is designed to honour and no writer has been a greater friend to Irish booksellers thanColm.”

The An Post Irish Book Awards are dedicated to honouring Irish writers across the entire publishing spectrum. This year’s shortlist features a diverse mix of exceptional writing from new and established writers across sixteen categories, including Novel of the Year, Children’s, Cookery, Crime Fiction, Popular Fiction, Nonfiction, Sports, Short Story, Poetry, Teen and Young Adult and Irish Language.

The categories include:

  • Eason Novel of the Year
  • National Book Tokens Popular Fiction Book of the Year
  • Bookselling Ireland Non-Fiction Book of the Year
  • Ireland AM Popular Non-Fiction Book of the Year
  • Sunday Independent Newcomer of the Year
  • TheJournal.ie Best Irish Published Book of the Year
  • Irish Independent Crime Fiction Book of the Year
  • Avoca Cookbook of the Year
  • Bord Gáis Energy Sports Book of the Year
  • RTÉ Radio One Listeners’ Choice Award
  • Specsavers Children’s Book of the Year (Junior)
  • Specsavers Children’s Book of the Year (Senior)
  • Dept 51@Eason Teen / Young Adult Book of the Year
  • Listowel Writers’ Week Poem of the Year
  • Writing.ie Short Story of the Year
  • The Love Leabhar Gaeilge Irish Language Book of the Year

RTÉ Television will be broadcasting highlights of the An Post Irish Book Awards on RTÉ One on Saturday 23 November, immediately after the Ray D’Arcy Show. The show will be presented by Miriam O’Callaghan. This programme will showcase one of the biggest celebrations of Irish writing, with many of Ireland’s most celebrated and loved authors in attendance.

For further information, please log on to the An Post Irish Book Awards website or social media channels:

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