The ‘Library Association of Ireland Author of the Year’ is today being unveiled as a new category for the An Post Irish Book Awards 2021, the annual highlight of the Irish literary calendar that celebrates and promotes the very best of Irish writing talent.
The ‘Library Association of Ireland Author of the Year’ category is designed to acknowledge an Irish author whose work has contributed significantly to the reader experience and enjoyment of Irish books during 2021. Nominations are uniquely open to librarians and library book club members nationwide to acknowledge their dedication, passion and commitment to the literary community in Ireland.
To cast their vote, librarians and library book club members will be invited by The Library Association of Ireland to visit: www.anpostirishbookawards.ie and nominate their favourite Irish author. With over 400 libraries, including public libraries, academic libraries, school libraries and special libraries, and almost 200 library book clubs across Ireland, nominations are expected to be in their thousands.
Nominations for the ‘Library Association of Ireland Author of the Year’ will close on Saturday 18 September and a shortlist consisting of six finalists will be revealed on Thursday 21 October. The overall winner will be announced at the An Post Irish Book Awards on Tuesday 23 November 2021.
Each year, the An Post Irish Book Awards bring together a vast community who are passionate about books – readers, authors, booksellers, publishers, and librarians – to recognise the very best of new and established Irish writing talent and 2021 will be no different. The ‘Library Association of Ireland Author of the Year’ will now be added to the wide range of other categories including Novel of the Year, Children’s (Junior and Senior), Cookery, Crime Fiction, Popular Fiction, Nonfiction, Lifestyle, Sports, Short Story, Poetry, Teen and Young Adult and Irish Language. It is the second new category to be added to this year’s awards, alongside the recently announced ‘An Post Bookshop of the Year.”
Cathal McCauley, President of the Library Association of Ireland, said: “Libraries and reading have been an important part of Ireland’s response to COVID-19 and reading has never been so important for many people who were subject to various restrictions. Many libraries saw demand grow by more than 300% during the past year. Reading and books allow us to learn, travel, and live wherever we are. In recognition of this, the Library Association of Ireland is delighted to sponsor this new award that acknowledges the enormous contribution Irish authors have made to the reader experience and enjoyment of Irish books during 2021 as nominated by librarians and library book club members.”
The Library Association of Ireland is the professional body representing libraries and librarianship in Ireland. The objectives of the association are to promote and develop high standards of librarianship and of library and information services in Ireland, and to secure greater co-operation between libraries.
Also revealed today, Bookstation, Ireland’s best value chain of book and station shops, is the new sponsor of the ‘Bookstation Lifestyle Book of the Year’ category which broadly covers a range of non-fiction titles.
Alan Johnston, Marketing Director of Bookstation, says: ‘We are very proud to be sponsoring the Bookstation Lifestyle Book of the Year award for the next three years. Every year the An Post Irish Book Awards reward and celebrate both exceptional writing and publishing in this country. As an Irish book chain, we are delighted that our passion for bookselling will now be reflected on this national stage as sponsors of a new award for books that enhance the lives of Irish people.’
The shortlist for the An Post Irish Book Awards 2021 will be announced on Thursday 21 October, while the winners will be announced on Tuesday 23 November. A television programme will be broadcast on RTÉ One television on Wednesday 8 December and will culminate in one of the 2021 winning titles being announced as the ‘An Post Irish Book of the Year 2021’.
An Post is also continuing with their hugely successful #ReadersWanted campaign, celebrating the value and joy of reading and encouraging everyone to pick up more books, more often. Simply search for the hashtag online to get involved.