‘The Song of Achilles’ wins 2012 Orange Prize
American author Madeline Miller has won this year’s Orange Prize for Fiction for her debut novel The Song of Achilles (Bloomsbury).
Miller was presented with the £30,000 (approximately A$48,000) prize at an awards ceremony in London on 30 May. This year marks the 17th year of the prize, which was established in 1996 to celebrate and promote fiction written by women. The prize is awarded each year to a novel written in English by a woman.
Miller’s novel, which was inspired by Homer’s Illiad, was selected from a shortlist of six. The other titles shortlisted for this year’s award were Half Blood Blues by Esi Edugyan (Serpent’s Tail), The Forgotten Waltz by Anne Enright (Jonathan Cape), Painter of Silence by Georgina Harding (Bloomsbury), Foreign Bodies by Cynthia Ozick (Atlantic Books), and State of Wonder by Ann Patchett (Bloomsbury).
Chair of judges Joanna Trollope said The Song of Achilles is ‘a more than worthy winner’ of this year’s prize, describing the book as ‘original, passionate, inventive and uplifting’. ‘Homer would be proud of her,’ said Trollope.
As previously reported by Bookseller+Publisher, mobile services company Orange said in May that it will end its sponsorship of the prize after the presentation of this year’s prize. Prize co-founder and honourary director Kate Mosse told the Bookseller at the time that she is ‘in active discussions with a number of potential new sponsors’ and hopes to announce a new sponsor later this year.
More information about the Orange Prize can be found online here.
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