American author Madeline Miller won the £30,000 (US$46,591) Orange Prize for Fiction, which "celebrates excellence, originality and accessibility in women's writing from throughout the world," for her debut novel The Song of Achilles.
"This is a more than worthy winner--original, passionate, inventive and uplifting. Homer would be proud of her," said Joanna Trollope, chair of judges.
The Guardian reported that the judges "took about three hours to reach their decision before agreeing, at midnight, to award the prize to Miller.... Trollope described the final judging meeting as 'almost painful,' owing to the strength of the six books on the shortlist."
"To be candid, if this had been a weaker year any one of them could have won," Trollope said. "It was an extremely strong shortlist and I hope the breadth and the adventurousness of the settings and the subject matter puts to bed for ever the idea that women only write about domestic things. They are all to be commended."
Terry Pratchett won the Bollinger Everyman Wodehouse Prize for Comic Fiction for Snuff, his 39th Discworld novel. He will be honored June 6 at the Telegraph Hay Festival, where he will receive a jeroboam of Bollinger Special Cuvée, a case of Bollinger La Grande Année and a set of the Everyman Wodehouse collection. In addition, a locally bred pig will be named after the novel.
The Guardian noted that Pratchett has been shortlisted for the prize on three previous occasions. "There are so many things he does which Wodehouse did too," said Peter Florence, one of the judges and director of the Hay Festival. "It's not just the playfulness of the language--he's also quite patently satirical in the way Wodehouse was. Wodehouse was really hard on fascism. He wasn't simply writing a comedy of manners, and neither is Pratchett.... Both of their invented worlds are wrestling with the political realities of their times."
Jacki @ Central