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‘Hello Friend We Missed You’ wins 2020 Not the Booker

Welsh writer Richard Owain Roberts has won the Guardian’s 2020 Not the Booker Prize for his debut novel Hello Friend We Missed You (Parthian Books).

Roberts’ novel won the public vote and the support of the award’s judges, who had overruled the popular vote in the previous two years.

The Guardian’s Sam Jordison said Hello Friend We Missed You, which follows a man who returns to his childhood home to care for his dying father, is ‘a worthy winner’ and ‘just the kind of book we hope to find with the Not the Booker prize’.

‘It’s a title that has not yet been widely reviewed, from a small publisher and—most importantly—by a writer of real talent and potential. It took me by surprise when I read it, and it’s haunted me ever since,’ Jordison said. ‘It’s formally daring, with clipped sentences, short elliptical chapters, and almost impressionistic streams of thought. It’s also very funny.’

Hello Friend We Missed You was chosen from a shortlist of six.

The winner of the award, which has the same criteria as the Booker Prize, receives a Guardian coffee mug.


Category: International news