Three Pakistani authors longlisted for South Asian literature prize

Published October 22, 2014
(L-R): Omar Shahid Khan, Kamila Shamsie, Bilal Tanweer
(L-R): Omar Shahid Khan, Kamila Shamsie, Bilal Tanweer

Three Pakistani authors have been selected in the nominees for the 2015 DSC Prize for South Asian Literature announced by leading Indian writer Keki N. Daruwalla, at the Goethe-Institut, Max Mueller Bhavan.

The Pakistani writers selected are Bilal Tanweer for The Scatter Here Is Too Great, Omar Shahid Hamid for The Prisoner and Kamila Shamsie for A God in Every Stone.

The longlist includes 10 books by authors who hail from India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Afghanistan; some of whom are now based in US, UK or Canada. Shortlisted books will be further announced on November 27th.

Other nominees include: Noontide Toll by Romesh Guneskera, And The Mountains Echoed by Khaled Hosseini, The Mirror of Beauty by Shamsur Rehman Faruqi, The Gypsy Goddess by Meena Kandasamy, The Lowland by Jhumpa Lehri, Helium by Jaspreet Singh and Mad Girl’s Love Song by Rukmini Bhaya Nair.

Daruwalla, who is chairing the jury, stated that the ten books were selected from over 75 entries and have been decided by the panel that includes, Daruwalla himself from India; literary critic and former Granta editor John Freeman; Maithree Wickramasinghe, a Professor of English at the University of Kelaniya, Sri Lanka and University of Sussex; Michael Worton, emeritus professor at the University College London, and Razi Ahmed, the founding chairman of the annual Lahore Literary Festival from Pakistan.

Speaking about the selection of the books, Daruwalla said: “It has been both exhausting and rewarding going through these seventy five novels. As expected the variety is considerable. Obviously there was a tremendous mix here—of themes, landscapes, styles, issues—both political and personal.”

The winner will be announced in January 2015 at the Zee Jaipur Literature Festival, and will receive $50,000.

Now in its fifth year, the first ever DSC Prize was presented to Pakistani author H M Naqvi for his debut novel Home Boy in 2011.

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