Delighted to see that two of my favourite books of 2021 are on the long list for the £10,000 Ondaatje Prize, which was announced today: Islands of Abandonment by Cal Flyn and I Belong Here by Anita Sethi. Also included is Iberia (which appeared towards the end of the year and I didn’t have time to consider for my roundup), the latest journey on two wheels from Julian Sayarer, who won the Stanford Dolman prize in 2017 for his book on the United States, Interstate. The award, an annual one made by the Royal Society of Literature, is for a work of fiction, non-fiction or poetry “that best evokes the spirit of a place”. For the full long list, see the RSL’s website.
The short list will be announced on April 20 and the winner on May 4.