Orange Prize Longlist Announced

Orange prize for fiction longlist shows diversity of historical novels

Five debut novelists among 20 vying for prize for women writers 

Orange Prize Longlist – Guardian article

Fittingly, on International Women’s Day, the Orange Prize for Fiction longlist has been announced.

The longlist includes Madeline Miller, a teacher of Latin and Ancient Greek who took 10 years to write her debut, The Song of Achilles.

 London, 08 March 2012: The Orange Prize for Fiction, the UK’s only annual book award for fiction written by a woman, today announces the 2012 longlist. Now in its seventeenth year, the Prize celebrates excellence, originality and accessibility in women’s writing throughout the world.

  • Island of Wings by Karin Altenberg (Quercus)– Swedish; 1st Novel
  • On the Floor by Aifric Campbell (Serpent’s Tail)– Irish; 3rd Novel
  • The Grief of Others by Leah Hager Cohen (The Clerkenwell Press)– American; 4th Novel
  • The Sealed Letter by Emma Donoghue (Picador)– Irish; 7th Novel
  • Half Blood Blues by Esi Edugyan (Serpent’s Tail)– Canadian; 2nd Novel
  • The Forgotten Waltz by Anne Enright (Jonathan Cape)– Irish; 5th Novel
  • The Flying Man by Roopa Farooki (Headline Review)– British; 5th Novel
  • Lord of Misrule by Jaimy Gordon (Quercus)– American; 4th Novel
  • Painter of Silence by Georgina Harding (Bloomsbury)– British; 3rd Novel
  • Gillespie and I by Jane Harris (Faber & Faber)– British; 2nd Novel
  • The Translation of the Bones by Francesca Kay (Weidenfeld & Nicolson)– British; 2nd Novel
  • The Blue Book by A.L. Kennedy (Jonathan Cape)– British; 6th Novel
  • The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern (Harvill Secker)– American; 1st Novel
  • The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller (Bloomsbury)– American; 1st Novel
  • Foreign Bodies by Cynthia Ozick (Atlantic Books)– American; 7th Novel
  • State of Wonder by Ann Patchett (Bloomsbury)– American; 6th Novel
  • There but for the by Ali Smith (Hamish Hamilton)– British; 5th Novel
  • The Pink Hotel by Anna Stothard (Alma Books)– British; 2nd Novel
  • Tides of War by Stella Tillyard (Chatto & Windus)– British; 1st Novel
  • The Submission by Amy Waldman (William Heinemann) – American; 1st Novel

The Song of Achilles

Greece in the age of Heroes. Patroclus, an awkward young prince, has been exiled to Phthia to live in the shadow of King Peleus and his strong, beautiful son, Achilles. By all rights their paths should never cross, but Achilles takes the shamed prince as his friend, and as they grow into young men skilled in the arts of war and medicine, their bond blossoms into something far deeper – despite the displeasure of Achilles’s mother Thetis, a cruel sea goddess. But then word comes that Helen of Sparta has been kidnapped. Torn between love and fear for his friend, Patroclus journeys with Achilles to Troy, little knowing that the years that follow will test everything they hold dear.

Madeline Miller has a BA and MAA from Brown University in Latin and Ancient Greek, and has been teaching both for the past nine years. She has also studied at the Yale School of Drama, specialising in adapting classical tales to a modern audience. The Song of Achilles is her first novel.