Thursday 21 November 2019
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Book penned in prison up for £50,000 award

Book penned in prison up for £50,000 award

2 months ago

Book penned in prison up for £50,000 award

2 months ago


A book penned in a Turkish prison cell has been nominated for a major prize.

I Will Never See The World Again was written by Turkish journalist Ahmet Altan, who is serving a life sentence after being convicted of crimes against the state.

His work is up for the Baillie Gifford Prize For Non-Fiction.

I Will Never See The World Again by Ahmet Altan
I Will Never See The World Again by Ahmet Altan (PA)

Altan was arrested and imprisoned in the aftermath of a failed coup attempt in Turkey in 2016 and is “now confined to a cell four metres long”.

Nobel laureates have signed an open letter to Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan calling for his release.

“Each page of the book …  is a resounding testament to the power of the artist’s imagination,” judges of The Baillie Gifford Prize For Non-Fiction said.

Altan reflects upon his sentence in the memoir and on the “hope and solace a writer’s mind can provide, even in the darkest places”.

The longlist for the £50,000 prize also features biographies of novelist George Orwell and painter Lucian Freud, plus a book on the “untold” lives of the women killed by Jack the Ripper.

The shortlist will be announced next month and the winner on November 19.

The Five by Hallie Rubenhold
The Five by Hallie Rubenhold is also on the longlist (PA)

The longlist:
– I Will Never See The World Again, Ahmet Altan;
– Furious Hours: Murder, Fraud And The Last Trial Of Harper Lee,  Casey Cep;
– On Chapel Sands: My mother And Other Missing Persons, Laura Cumming;
– The Anarchy: The Relentless Rise Of The East India Company, William Dalrymple;
– Homesick: Why I Live In A Shed, Catrina Davies;
– The Lives Of Lucian Freud: Youth 1922-1968, William Feaver;
– The Windrush Betrayal: Exposing The Hostile Environment, Amelia Gentleman
– Maoism: A Global History, Julia Lovell;
– The Ministry Of Truth: A Biography Of George Orwell’s 1984, Dorian Lynskey;
– Guest House For Young Widows, Azadeh Moaveni;
– The Five: The Untold Lives Of The Women Killed By Jack The Ripper, Hallie Rubenhold;
– The Outlaw Ocean: Crime And Survival In The Last Untamed Frontier, Ian Urbina.


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