Graham Norton, Cecelia Ahern and debut novelist Mary Costello were among the winners of the Bord Gáis Energy Irish Book Awards 2014, held in Dublin yesterday evening (26th November).
Norton’s memoir, The Life and Loves of a He Devil (Hodder & Stoughton), was named National Book Tokens Non-Fiction Book of the Year, while Ahern’s The Year I Met You (HarperCollins) was the Books Are My Bag Popular Fiction Book of the Year.
Louise O’Neill’s YA novel Only Ever Yours (Quercus) was named Sunday Independent Newcomer of the Year, while debut novelist Mary Costello beat off competition from David Mitchell, John Boyne and Colm Tóibín to win Eason Novel of the Year for Academy Street (Canongate).
RTÉ Radio 1’s John Murray Show Listeners’ Choice Award went to It’s All in the Head by Majella O’Donnell (Simon & Schuster). The Ireland AM Crime Fiction Book of the Year was Unravelling Oliver by Liz Nugent (Penguin Ireland) and The Nation’s Favourite Food Fast by Neven Maguire (Gill & Macmillan) was Avonmore Cookbook of the Year. Brian O’Driscoll’s The Test (Penguin Ireland) won Bord Gáis Energy Sports Book of the Year.
The Specsavers Children’s Book of the Year in the Junior category was Shh! We Have a Plan by Chris Haughton (Walker Books), and in the Senior category it the title went to Moone Boy by Chris O’Dowd and Nick Vincent Murphy (Macmillan Children’s Books).
Dubliners 100 by Thomas Morris (Tramp Press) was TheJournal.ie Best Irish Published Book of the Year and John Boyne’s "Rest Day" (The Irish Times) was named Writing.ie Short Story of the Year.
Jeffrey Archer was presented with the inaugural International Recognition Award by broadcaster George Hook. The award was introduced to honour international writers who, in the view of the Bord Gáis Energy Irish Book Awards board, have contributed substantially to the health and wealth of the Irish book-trade.
The Board said of its choice: “For nigh on four decades, Jeffrey Archer has been a one-man publishing industry combining his unique storytelling ability with an indefatigable energy that has seen him top bestseller lists around the world with sales of over 270 million copies for his many novels and short story collections. These are phenomenal numbers by any standards and the pace shows no sign of slowing.”
Renowned contemporary Irish poet Paul Durcan was received the Bob Hughes Lifetime Achievement Award 2014 from Paula Meehan, Ireland Professor of Poetry.
Chairman of the Bord Gáis Energy Irish Book Awards, John Treacy, said: “These fantastic award winners represent the very best Irish books published this year. They reflect a highly vibrant and creative community and are a wonderful example of Irish writing and publishing at its very best. All winning titles will also make extremely rewarding gifts this Christmas!
He added: “The task now is to identify which of these winning titles will be crowned the Bord Gáis Energy Book of the Year. The public are asked to vote for their favourite by going to www.bgeirishbookawards.ie and we will announce the deserving winner on the 5th December.”
The Bord Gáis Energy Irish Book Awards are in their ninth year. Last night’s ceremony took place in the Dublin’s Double Tree Hilton with guests including Roddy Doyle, Donal Ryan and Eoin Colfer, and highlights will be aired on RTÉ Television on the evening of Saturday 29th November.
Voting for the overall Bord Gáis Energy Book of the Year is open from today (27th November) until midnight on Thursday 4th December. Last year’s winner was Michael Harding for his memoir Staring at Lakes (Hachette Books Ireland).