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International Booker postponed amid distribution disruption

The Booker Prize Foundation has postponed the International Booker Prize winner announcement due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

The award was originally set to be announced on 19 May, but will be postponed to an as-yet-unnamed date later in the European summer.

In a statement the Booker Prize Foundation said the move was ‘to ensure that readers are able to get hold of copies of the shortlisted books’.

‘The online announcement of the shortlist had unprecedented reach and engagement, but access to the books at present is problematic,’ the organisation said. ‘In discussions with the Booker Prize Foundation, publishers have stressed how severely book distribution is disrupted due to COVID-19, so steps are being taken to ensure that the authors, translators, publishers and book trade are best supported at this difficult time.’

It said a new announcement date would be announced ‘as soon as possible’.

‘After careful consideration, we’ve decided on this course of action to ensure that the shortlist, and ultimately the winner, can be celebrated at a time when readership of these exceptional novels is made easier for everyone,’ said the Foundation’s literary director Gaby Wood. ‘As the world begins to recover, their contents will be found all the more rewarding for being, in effect, a form of travel.’

As reported by Books+Publishing Australian author Shokoofeh Azar is among the authors shortlisted for the 2020 prize, for her novel The Enlightenment of the Greengage Tree (Wild Dingo).


Category: International news