Colm Tóibín beat out strong competition including Hilary Mantel's Wolf Hall to take the Novel Award for Brooklyn. As Mark Brown in The Guardian points out, the author he is "something of a bridesmaid" where major awards are concerned, with many near misses in major literary prizes.
Brooklyn is described as :
... a sparely written account of a young woman's emigration from 1950s Ireland to New Yorkand the judges called it :
Poised, quiet and incrementally shattering - we all loved this book and can't praise it highly enough.Read more about the book here. The Guardian has an extract from the novel up, here, and you can read reviews here, here, and here.
The first novel award was taken by Raphael Selbourne for Beauty which the judges said :
Captures the raw humanity of inner city life with extraordinary authenticity.The novel, which marks another success for the independent Tindal Street Press, is about :
... a naive young Bengali woman living in Wolverhampton who finds herself ostracised by her family after a failed arranged marriage.You can read more about it here and here.
Other winners were Christopher Reid in the poetry category for A Scattering; Graham Farmelo for The Strangest Man his life of quantum physicist Paul Dirac; while Patrick Ness won the children's book award for The Ask and the Answer.