Griffith REVIEW contributor, Margo Lanagan, has won the Barbara Jefferis award.
Margo Lanagan’s Sea Hearts (Allen & Unwin) and Fiona McFarlane’s The Night Guest (Penguin Books) were named joint winners of the Barbara Jefferis Award 2014. The Barbara Jefferis Award is offered biennially for ‘the best novel written by an Australian author that depicts women and girls in a positive way or otherwise empowers the status of women and girls in society’. This is the first time that the Barbara Jefferis Award has been split between two titles. The winners will each receive $25,000, with $1000 being awarded to each of the shortlisted authors.
Margo Lanagan’s Sea Hearts, set in a remote fictional village, reminiscent of a Scottish island, leapt out at all three judges as a superb, enduring story of lives changed in a small fishing community. Full of sensuous detail of the sea, the rocks, the wind, the weather, it makes hypnotic reading, a world of its own that engulfs the reader. Lanagan takes an old myth and gives it a unique flavour, drawing a tale that is both intensely of its time and moment, but also explores idealisation, history, miscegenation and loss.
Read Margo’s short story from Once Upon a Time in Oz, ‘Black Swan Event‘