The Republic of Consciousness Prize, United States and Canada, has announced its shortlist, with books by Suzette Mayr and Arinze Ifeakandu among the finalists.
This is the first year for the award, which honors a work of literary fiction published by a small press. It is the North American iteration of a U.K. award.
The Sleeping Car Porter (Coach House Books), Mayr’s Giller Prize–winning novel, was named a finalist; the book was recently longlisted for the Carol Shields Prize, another literary award in its first year. God’s Children Are Little Broken Things (A Public Space Books), the story collection by Ifeakandu, also made the shortlist; earlier this week it was named a finalist for the Lambda Literary Award for gay fiction.
Three translated books were named finalists: Blood Red, written by Gabriela Ponce and translated by Sarah Booker (Restless Books); A New Name, Septology VI-VII, written by Jon Fosse and translated by Damion Searls (Transit Books); and Pollak’s Arm, written by Hans von Trotha and translated by Elisabeth Lauffer (New Vessel Press).
All five books will split a prize fund of $15,000, with half the money going to the publisher and half to the author. Translated titles will have their money split three ways between press, author, and translator.
The winner of the award, which was founded by critic and bookstore co-owner Lori Feathers, will receive “bragging rights.”
Michael Schaub, a journalist and regular contributor to NPR, lives near Austin, Texas.