I’m very excited that The Shining Girls has been short-listed for the 2014 Sunday Times Fiction Prize, which goes to “a novel of rare imagination and style, evocative, textured and a tale so compelling as to become an enduring landmark of contemporary fiction.”
Chairperson Annari van der Merwe says: “This year’s shortlist contains an interesting mix of different genres, including historical fiction, Bildungsroman and, in one novel, both speculative fiction and crime. Two novels are by established writers, three by newcomers. What distinguishes all of them, however, is that they are exploring unfamiliar territory, are written in a unique narrative style, and are plotted in an imaginative way. We believe each has the potential to become an ‘enduring landmark’, to quote the prize criteria, of contemporary South African fiction.”
The Shining Girls is up against some hot contenders: Eben Venter’s Wolf Wolf, Claire Robertson’s The Spiral House, Dominique Botha’s False River and Penumbra by Songeziwe Mahlangu.
Here’s the poster with the short-listees for the fiction and non-fiction prize, as featured on Sunday Times books editor, Ben William’s office door: