RSL Ondaatje Prize
This is an annual award of £10,000 for a distinguished work of fiction, non-fiction or poetry, evoking the spirit of a place.
Alan Johnson wins the 2014 RSL Ondaatje Prize with This Boy
“To win any award is great but to win this very special award, essentially for the art of evocation is deeply satisfying. I set out to recreate the streets of my childhood and this prize encourages me to believe I succeeded.”
This year's judges were Imtiaz Dharker, A.L. Kennedy and Jenny Uglow.
The 2014 shortlist:
Nadeem Aslam The Blind Man’s Garden (Faber)
Patrick Barkham Badgerlands (Granta)
Mark Dapin Spirit House (Tuskar Rock Press)
Tim Dee Four Fields (Jonathan Cape)
Alan Johnson This Boy (Bantam Press)
Esther Woolfson Field Notes From a Hidden City (Granta)
One of this year's judges A.L. Kennedysays of the winning book:
“This Boy is a remarkable autobiography, both passionate and subtle, both moving and gently enraging. It is filled with the geography of childhood and the taut interiors that poverty produces. Never sentimental or self-aggrandising, it is a very human and humane record of a time and a life and a city.”
Download the press release from the bottom of this page for more details on this year's winner and shortlist.
If you have any media enquiries, please contact Annette Brook.
2013 Philip Hensher Scenes from Early Life
2012 Rahul Bhattacharya The Sly Company of People Who Care
2011 Edmund de Waal The Hare with Amber Eyes
2010 Ian Thomson The Dead Yard: Tales of Modern Jamaica
2009 Adam Nicolson Sissinghurst: An Unfinished History
2008 Graham Robb The Discovery of France
2007 Hisham Matar In the Country of Men
2006 James Meek The People’s Act of Love
2005 Rory Stewart The Places In Between
2004 Louisa Waugh Hearing Birds Fly