Tea Obreht Wins 2011 Orange Prize for ‘The Tiger’s Wife’

Cover ImageTea Obreht, author of The Tiger’s Wife, can now add Orange Prize winner to her ever-blossoming resume. Obreht bested contenders Emma Donoghue (Room), Aminatta Forna (The Memory of Love), Emma Henderson (Grace Williams Says it Loud), Nicole Krauss (Great House), and Kathleen Winter (Annabel) for this year’s prestigious UK award.

For those of you who haven’t heard of the Orange Prize, it’s the UK’s annual book award for fiction written by a woman. The award can be presented to a female author of any nationality for the best eligible full-length novel written in the English language.

At just 25, Obreht is the youngest author thus far to win the Orange Prize for Fiction. Not only will she take home an awarded “Bessie” sculpture, but also a monetary prize of about $49,000.00. Not bad at all for a debut novel.

Chair of Judges Bettany Hughes said:  “The Tiger’s Wife is an exceptional book and Tea Obreht is a truly exciting new talent. Obreht’s powers of observation and her understanding of the world are remarkable. By skillfully spinning a series of magical tales she has managed to bring the tragedy of chronic Balkan conflict thumping into our front rooms with a bittersweet vivacity.”

Tea Obreht was born in 1985 in the former Yugoslavia, and spent her childhood in Cyprus and Egypt before eventually immigrating to the United States in 1997 (via). Her writing has been published in The New Yorker and was highlighted in the highly regarded 20 Under 40 issue. Obreht has also appeared in major publications such as The Atlantic, Harper’s, The New York Times, and The Guardian and was included in the National Book Foundation’s 5 under 35.

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– Post by Megan Shaffer

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