Pan Macmillan Australia is thrilled to announce that three of our Picador titles were shortlisted for the Miles Franklin Literary Award 2019. With a shortlist of only 6 Australian novels, Picador titles have therefore managed to secure 50% of the spots!
The announcement of authors shortlisted for the prestigious prize was made Tuesday 2 July. The event was held at the Mitchell Library of NSW – the “literary home” of Miles Franklin. Picador author Rodney Hall is nominated for his novel, A Stolen Season. Hall took home the Miles Franklin award twice previously for his works, The Grisly Wife (1994) and Just Relations (1982). Gregory Day, winner of the Australian Literature Society Gold Medal in 2006, is nominated for his novel, A Sand Archive. Award-winning author, Jennifer Mills is nominated for her novel, Dyschronia. In contrast to Hall, Day and Mills and both first-time nominees for the award.
The winner of the Miles Franklin Literary Award 2019 will be announced on 30 July. With just one month to go, now is the perfect time to pick up the novels of our Picador nominees. Read the novel spotlights below and let us know what you think of 2019’s nominated novels.
Seeking stories of Australia’s Great Ocean Road, a young writer stumbles across a curious manual whose author has dedicated a lifetime to the study of shifting sands – whether metaphorical and literal. Undoubtedly Gregory Day’s magnum opus, this ‘skilful, lyrical novel’ (The Australian) ‘unlocks a world both of sorrow and unexpected poetry’ (Sydney Morning Herald) in the life of its protagonist – a quiet Australian engineer who bears comparison to Sebald’s Jacques Austerlitz or Williams’ Professor Stoner.
In an uncomfortably prescient scene, Dyschronia opens with a massive environmental disaster. The sea has receded, stranding a small beach town miles inland, surrounded by dying marine lifeforms. Flashing between a sort of Grecian chorus of the townsfolk who opt to remain, and the visions of their home-grown Cassandra – this book is a breathtakingly ‘daring, original and ambitious’ (The Australian) speculative novel about certainly scary state of our future given our inability to heed the warnings of our prophets.
Master stylist Rodney Hall is no stranger to the Miles Franklin longlist. His diverse and ambitious oeuvre has made the shortlist seven times. His novels Just Relations and The Grisly Wife won the award in 1982 and 1994 respectively. This bated novel of three lives experiencing the triumph and catastrophe of the book’s title has been called ‘an unsettling triptych… a triumph of daring and narrative skill’ (The Age) and ‘outstanding and inimitable’ (ABR).
About the Miles Franklin Literary Award:
The Miles Franklin Literary Award was established by prolific author and feminist Stella Maria Sarah Miles Franklin, consequently known for her first novel My Brilliant Career. First presented in 1957, the Award celebrates novels of the highest literary merit that tell stories about Australian life. Winning authors certainly take home a prize of $60,000. The award remains Australia’s most prestigious and valued literary award.