Northern Irish author Anna Burns' 'Milkman' wins Man Booker Prize

Press Association

Founded in 1969, the Man Booker Prize was originally open to British, Irish and Commonwealth writers.

In addition to Milkman, the Booker Prize shortlist - two-thirds of which were written by women - included Robin Robertson's The Long Take, which uses prose to follow a World War II veteran across the U.S. in Hollywood's postwar glory years, Richard Powers' The Overstory, a work of narrative with an ecological message, The Mars Room by Rachel Kushner, an steadfast account by a woman of poverty and mass incarceration, Esi Edugyan's Washington Black, an unusual story of colonial slavery and the burden of freedom, and Daisy Johnson who's nomination for Everything Under, her debut novel about a complex mother-daughter relationship, made her the youngest nominee in the Man Booker Prize history.

Anna Burns on Tuesday became the first author from Northern Ireland to win the Man Booker Prize for Fiction for her novel Milkman.

Judges for the elite literary fiction prize described it as "beginning with the distinctive and consistently realised voice of the amusing, resilient, astute, plain-spoken, first-person protagonist".

Burns was born in the Northern Irish capital Belfast in 1962 and now lives in southern England.

She is the author of two previous novels, No Bones and Little Constructions, and the novella Mostly Hero.

"We are honoured to support the Man Booker Prize for the sixteenth year, as it continues in its fiftieth year to champion literary excellence and the power of the novel on a global scale", Ellis said.

"It's written in this fantastic voice of this woman who is living in a divided society", he said.

Set in the province during the Troubles, Milkman is the coming-of-age story of its unnamed protagonist, who becomes the target of malicious gossip and hearsay from her local community over her involvement with a paramilitary sexual predator.

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"I struggled a lot financially".

"It is true that because of the flow of the language and..."

He told The Times: 'In the way that a walk up Snowden is challenging but it is definitely worth it because the view is terrific when you get to the top.

The writer was awarded the Man Booker at an award ceremony at the Guildhall in London. Johnson will be the youngest-ever Booker laureate if she wins. It was her third novel. The Long Take, a genre-defying noir-tinged novel by Scottish poet Robin Robertson that unfolds in verse, prose and photographs, made the shortlist.

And later, she told Radio 4's Today programme that she creates the end of sentences before the beginning.

Another finalist was Richard Powers (USA) for The Overstory, about nine strangers summoned by trees to try to save the continent's few remaining acres of forest.

"Each one explores the anatomy of pain - among the incarcerated and on a slave plantation, in a society fractured by sectarian violence, and even in the natural world", he said.

"This novel will help people to think about #MeToo. but we think it will last and that means it's not just about something that's going on in this moment".

Mr Appiah said numerous 171 books that had been submitted for the prize were overlong and badly in need of a vigorous pruning.

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