Belfast Writer Anna Burns Wins 2018 Man Booker Prize for ‘Milkman’

Congratulations are in order!

Who Won 2018 Man Booker Prize?

And the 2018 Man Booker Prize goes to… Anna Burns for Milkman!

BBC Arts announced this year’s Man Booker Prize winner during BBC News’ special live from London’s Guildhall. Arts correspondent Rebecca Jones did the honors of presenting the coveted prize at the annual ceremony, where finalists Esi Edugyan, Daisy Johnson, Rachel Kushner, Richard Powers, and Robin Robertson were all in the running for the £50,000 ($65,931) cash award.

Among those on the judging panel this time were Jacqueline Rose, Kwame Anthony Appiah, Val McDermid, Leo Robson, and Leanne Shapton.

The announcement comes three months after the 2018 Man Booker Prize longlist introduced several other works for the honor, including Belinda Bauer‘s SnapNick Drnaso‘s SabrinaGuy Gunaratne‘s In Our Mad and Furious CitySophie Mackintosh‘s The Water Cure, Michael Ondaatje‘s WarlightRobin Robertson‘s The Long Take, Sally Rooney‘s Normal People, and Donal Ryan‘s From a Low and Quiet Sea.

Learn more about Burns’ Man Booker Prize-winning book, and all the runner-ups below.

The language and content below are sourced from The Man Booker Prize website.

Anna Burns Milkman 2018 Man Booker Prize Winner

About Anna Burns’ Milkman, winner of the 2018 Man Booker PrizeA coming-of-age story about a young girl’s affair with an older married man, set in a society that closely mirrors Troubles-era Belfast.

Burns, 56, who was born in Belfast and lives in East Sussex, drew on the experience of Northern Ireland during the Troubles to write Milkman. Her first acclaimed novel, No Bones, was also set in this period. She saw off competition from two British writers, two American writers, and one Canadian writer.

Kwame Anthony Appiah, 2018 Chair of judges, comments: “None of us has ever read anything like this before. Anna Burns’ utterly distinctive voice challenges conventional thinking and form in surprising and immersive prose. It is a story of brutality, sexual encroachment and resistance threaded with mordant humour. Set in a society divided against itself, Milkman explores the insidious forms oppression can take in everyday life.”

Milkman is Burns’ third full-length novel. She is the first Northern Ireland writer to take home the prize.


Hear Burns read from Milkman and the judges’ remarks on the work, below.

Meet the 2018 Man Booker Prize Finalists

Daisy Johnson Everything Under 2018 Man Booker Shortlist

About Daisy Johnson’s Everything Under, finalist: Set in the British countryside and centres on the complex relationship between Gretel and her mother, who abandoned her to foster care so she could make a fresh start with a new lover.

Judges’ comments: “The twists and turns of the book’s stories braid this together with European folk tales to create a strong narrative river that carries us to a conclusion laced with tantalising possibilities.”

Purchase: $11.00

Note: Daisy Johnson is the youngest author ever to be nominated for the Man Booker Prize, at age 27.

Esi Edugyan Washington Black 2018 Man Booker Shortlist

About Esi Edugyan’s Washington Black, finalist: A friendship between an 11-year-old slave and an abolitionist inventor who together try to escape from Barbados on a quest for freedom.

Judges’ comments: “Moments of horrifying cruelty and violence sit alongside episodes of great tenderness and deep connection. A majestic grandeur is achieved with the lightest touch.”

Purchase: $23.09

The Mars Room Rachel Kushner 2018 Man Booker Shortlist

About Rachel Kushner, finalist: Convict Romy Hall begins two consecutive life sentences at Stanville Woman’s Correctional Facility and is confronted with a new reality of institutional living from her previously chaotic life in the outside world.

Judges’ comments: “A heartbreaking exploration of lives at the margins of society, mobilising fiercely inventive characters whose lives seem mostly to have been foredoomed.”

Purchase: $16.50

Richard Powers The Overstory 2018 Man Booker Shortlist

About Richard Powers’ The Overstory, finalist: Nine unique strangers become summoned by trees and are brought together in a last stand to save the continents few remaining acres of forest.

Judges’ comments: “Nine powerfully written, interlinked stories play out in the understory. Along the way there are stirring, lyrical paragraphs on love, photography, the culture of ancient China, game code, science, and maybe most impressively, faith, rendered without sanctimony or reprimand.”

Purchase: $25.16

Robin Robertson 2018 Man Booker Shortlist

About Robin Robertson’s The Long Take, finalist: Robertson combines poetry with narrative fiction to tell the story of a D-Day veteran suffering with PTSD, who tries to piece his life together in a nation divided by race and social class.

Judges’ comments: “A lyrical tribute to the power of writing and image to convey, and somehow survive, historic and ongoing suffering and injustice.”

Purchase: Check on Amazon

Congratulations, Anna Burns!!!

Have you read any of the 2018 Man Booker Prize finalists? Let us know!
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