Words: Ciarán Howley
Keegan was one of two Irish authors chosen for the prestigious Booker longlist before it was announced that Small Things Like These was one of six titles nominated on the shortlist.
Foster author Claire Keegan has been shortlisted for this year’s Booker Prize Award.
The author’s fourth title Small Things Like These follows the story of Bill, a child born to an unwed mother in 1980s Ireland during an era of oppressive Catholicism who finds refuge in the home of an elderly Protestant neighbour.
“Small Things Like These can be read as a feminist revision of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol — to which the novel explicitly alludes”, described NPR reviewer Thuy Dinh.
Keegan dedicated the book to “the women and children who suffered time in Ireland’s Magdalene laundries.”
The Booker Prize is a literary prize awarded to authors for long-form across the UK and Ireland. Nominated alongside Keegan are authors NoViolet Bulawayo, Percival Everett, Shehan Karunatilaka, Elizabeth Strout and Alan Garner. Keegan was one of two Irish authors to be selected for the longlist including The Colony author Audrey Magee, with Keegan succeeding to the final shortlist.
This comes off what is something of a hot streak for Keegan, having won the Orwell Prize for Small Things Like These and having her novella Foster adapted for the big-screen as An Cailín Ciúin.
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