Aminatta Forna’s fourth novel and fifth book Happiness is one of the six finalists for the 2019 Ondaatje Prize. The announcement was made at an RSL London event themed “The Spirit of a Place.” Alongside her on the longlist was the Nigerian writer Emmanuel Iduma, for his second book and first collection of essays A Stranger’s Pose.
Named after Christopher Ondaatje, the annual £10,000 Ondaatje Prize, which incorporates the Winifred Holtby Memorial Prize, is for a fiction, poetry or nonfiction book that evokes the “spirit of a place.” It is open only to writers who are citizens of, or are resident in, the Commonwealth or Ireland. The prize, which usually does not announce a longlist, has done so this year in celebration of its 15th anniversary.
The 2019 judges are RSL Fellows Sabrina Mahfouz, Michèle Roberts, and Ian Thomson.
The winner will be announced a month afterwards on 13 May.
Congratulations to Aminatta Forna.