‘My life completely changed’: debut wins world’s richest prize for a novel

Nominated by just one library in Belgium, Emily Ruskovich’s Idaho lands the €100,000 International Dublin literary award

Emily Ruskovich was sitting in her back garden in Boise, Idaho, playing in the grass with her one-year-old daughter, when she got the phone call to tell her that she had won the world’s richest prize for a single novel: the €100,000 (£88,000) International Dublin literary award. The 33-year-old debut novelist says she kept thinking she must have misunderstood or hallucinated the news.

“I didn’t speak at first, then I reacted with great joy, but then I also felt really uncertain,” she says. “I couldn’t really believe it had happened. It was just a quiet little moment in the grass with my baby and my life was completely changed.”

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‘My life completely changed’: debut wins world’s richest prize for a novel