Jeanine Leane is one of four Australians shortlisted for the inaugural Commonwealth Book Prize. Leane, a former co-ordinator of AustLit’s BlackWords Research Community, is shortlisted for her intertwined collection of stories, Purple Threads. Other Australians on the shortlist are Christopher Currie, for The Ottoman Motel, Mette Jakobsen, for The Vanishing Act, and Cory Taylor, for Me and Mr Booker.
The Commonwealth Book Prize is being offered by Commonwealth Writers, a new cultural program running under the auspices of the Commonwealth Foundation. Prizes will be awarded for each of five regions — Africa, Asia, Canada and Europe, the Caribbean, and the Pacific — and an overall winner will then be selected.
Book Prize chair Margaret Busby commented that the judges were looking for ‘potential and promise from the entries. We certainly found what we were hoping for with some consummately accomplished writing from some very interesting writers.’
The five regional winners will be announced on 22 May and the overall winner on 8 June. To see the full shortlist and read more of the judges’ comments, follow the links on the Commonwealth Foundation’s news site.