An initial shortlist of six out of the 126 books submitted for the 2011 edition of The Nigeria Prize for Literature has been announced.
According to the release, the shortlist – as approved by the Advisory Board of the prize – contains the names and works of prolific writers such as Uche Peter Umez (The Runaway Hero); Philip Begh0 (Aunty Felicia goes to School); Ayodele Olofintuade (Eno’s story); Chinyere Obi-Obasi (The Great Fall); Mai Nasara (The Missing Clock); and Thelma Nwokeji – a new writer who made the list with a debut novel, Red Nest.
Uche Peter Umez won the 2006 Commonwealth Short Story Prize and Philip Begho is an author of over 70 books, and a two-time contender for The Nigeria Prize for Literature in 2004 and 2010. Ayodele Olofintuade’s Eno’s story (a story about a tortured Ibibio child), received an interesting REVIEW from literary critic, Ikhide Ikheloa. Apart from these three, the others are relatively familiar authors
According to Professor Ayo Banjo, a second shortlist of three books will be announced in September and a winner, if any, in October.
The Nigeria Prize for Literature rotates yearly amongst four literary genres: prose fiction, poetry, drama and children’s literature.
The 2011 prize goes to children’s literature. This year’s prize has a cash value of USD $100, 000 (One hundred thousand United States Dollars).
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