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An Post Irish Book Awards

Joseph O’Connor, Vicky Phelan and Andrea Corr were among the winning authors at this year’s An Post Irish Book Awards.

Acclaimed Irish author Colm Tóibín received the Bob Hughes Lifetime Achievement Award. It recognises the central position he has occupied in Irish cultural life for over three decades, with works including Brooklyn, The Master and The Testament of Mary.

First awarded in 2006, the awards showcase a diverse mix of exceptional writing from new and established writers across 16 categories. This year, more than 115,000 votes were cast by the book-loving public to select the winners in each category.


Each year, readers are also invited to vote for their overall ‘An Post Irish Book of the Year’ with the winners announced in January. Previous winners include Emilie Pine for Notes to Self, Louise O’Neill for Asking For It, and Donal Ryan for The Spinning Heart.

2019 Award Winners

RTÉ Radio 1 Listeners’ Choice Award
  • Overcoming – Vicky Phelan with Naomi Linehan (Hachette Books) – Championed by Ray D’Arcy
Bord Gáis Energy Sports Book of the Year
  • Recovering – Richie Sadlier with Dion Fanning (Gill Books)
Avoca Cookbook of the Year
  • Cornucopia: The Green Cookbook – Tony Keogh, Aoife Carrigy, the Chefs of Cornucopia, Deirdre and Dairine McCafferty (Gill Books)
Irish Independent Crime Fiction Book of the Year
  • Cruel Acts – Jane Casey (HarperFiction)
Bookselling Ireland Non-Fiction Book of the Year
  • Constellations – Sinéad Gleeson (Picador) Best Irish-Published Book of the Year
  • Children of the Troubles – Joe Duffy and Freya McClements (Hachette Books Ireland)
Love Leabhar Gaeilge Irish Language Book of the Year
  • Tairngreacht – Proinsias Mac a’Bhaird (LeabhairComhar)
Dept51@Eason Teen & Young Adult Book of the Year
  • Other Words for Smoke – Sarah Maria Griffin (Titan Books)
Specsavers Children’s Book of the Year – Senior
  • Shooting for the Stars - My Journey to Become Ireland’s First Astronaut – Norah Patten, illustrated by Jennifer Farley (The O’Brien Press)
Specsavers Children’s Book of the Year – Junior
  • 123 Ireland! – Aoife Dooley (Little Island Books)
Sunday Independent Newcomer of the Year
  • When All is Said – Anne Griffin (Hodder & Stoughton)
National Book Tokens Popular Fiction Book of the Year
  • Once, Twice, Three Times an Aisling – Emer McLysaght and Sarah Breen (Gill Books)
Listowel Writers’ Week Irish Poem of the Year
  • Salt Rain – Audrey Molloy (Mslexia, September 2019) Short Story of the Year Award
  • Parrot – Nicole Flattery (The Stinging Fly, Issue 39, Volume 2, Winter 2018-19)
Ireland AM Popular Non-Fiction Book of the Year
  • Barefoot Pilgrimage – Andrea Corr (HarperNonFiction)
Eason Novel of the Year
  • Shadowplay – Joseph O’Connor (Harvill Secker)

Supporting Literacy

We have supported the National Adult Literacy Agency in providing literacy, numeracy and digital tuition to adults and families for more than a decade. 

This short documentary, filmed by noted documentarian Ken Wardrop, follows Veronica Poole - a determined woman who has taken the brave step to return to education after many years.

Even though Veronica is only at the start of her journey back into education, the film sees her take on the sizeable challenge of writing a speech and reciting it in front of Ireland’s greatest literary minds at the Irish Book Awards.

If Veronica’s story has inspired you or someone you know to take the first step back to learning, contact NALA today to learn how you can get started.

Keep up to date

Read more about the An Post Irish Book Awards or follow us on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter for regular updates:

  • Facebook: @AnPostIBAS
  • Instagram: @anpost_irishbookawards
  • Twitter: @AnPostIBAS​
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