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Romania’s Mircea Cărtărescu wins Dublin Literary Award

Romanian author Mircea Cărtărescu and his translator Sean Cotter have won this year’s Dublin Literary Award for the novel Solenoid.

The award, sponsored by Dublin City Council, is the world’s largest prize for a single novel published in English and is worth €100,000.

In this case, the prize pot is shared, with Mr Cărtărescu being awarded €75,000 and Mr Cotter receiving €25,000.

Solenoid is based on the author’s own experience as a teacher, and is set in the reality of Romania in the late 70’s and early 80’s Communist Romania.

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Combining fiction with autobiography, the novel was hailed as one of the best books of 2022 by The New Yorker, and the Financial Times amongst others.

Solenoid is the 12th novel in translation to win the award.

It was presented by Lord Mayor of Dublin, and patron of the award, Daithí de Róiste and Dublin City Librarian Mairead Owens.

Winning author Mircea Cărtărescu said: “Winning the Dublin literary award is one of the most significant achievements in my whole literary career and a great honour for me.”

Solenoid was selected from a shortlist of six titles, from an original longlist of 70 titles, nominated by 80 libraries, from 35 countries.

Novels by four Irish authors were among the 70 books longlisted for the 2024 award.

The quartet included Old God’s Time by Sebastian Barry, My Father’s House by Joseph O’Connor, Soldier, Sailor by Claire Kilroy and Haven by Emma Donoghue.

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