Tuesday, 5 January 2010

Costa Novel of the Year


I’m delighted by the news, just filtering through the midwinter snowfields to my outpost here in East Kent, that Colm Tóibín's quietly powerful novel, Brooklyn, has won the Costa novel of the year award. It was my favourite book of 2009, and there were some strong contenders (including all the shortlisted Booker novels and my second-favourite book-of-the-year, Peace by Richard Bausch). Brooklyn is a deceptively simple story of a young woman who leaves 1950s Ireland for New York, falls in love and then returns to her home town. But the novel is about much more than that, and Tóibín's understated prose has a depth and resonance that is a real pleasure to read. I was bowled over by the brilliance of Tóibín's writing, and can’t recommend it strongly enough to any aspiring author.

You can read my full review of the novel on the BookBag website.