Marlene van Niekerk's widely
acclaimed novel AGAAT has been longlisted for
the Independent Booksellers' Choice Award
This award, co-sponsored by Melville House and trade e-newsletter Shelf Awareness,
is given to the best book from an independent publisher published in 2010 as decided
on by staff members at independent bookstores in the US. The shortlist will be
announced on May 1st. On 23 May the five winners will be announced during the
annual Book Expo American convention, at a ceremony at the Housing Works
Bookstore in New York City.
Marlene van Niekerk has received wide recognition for AGAAT since it was first published in South Africa by Tafelberg in Afrikaans in 2004, and in English by Tafelberg with Jonathan Ball in 2006. AGAAT was shortlisted for the Independent Foreign Fiction Prize in 2008 and won the South African Sunday Times Literary Award in 2005, and Heyns was awarded Outstanding Translation Award in 2009 as well as the Sol Plaatje Award for Translation in 2008. It was listed as a Best Book in 2010 by both Publisher's Weekly, and Booklist. AGAAT was brought out in the UK by Little Brown in 2007 under the title THE WAY OF THE WOMEN and Tin House published AGAAT under its original title in 2010. Rights have been sold to Gallimard in France, Neri Pozza in Italy, Querido in Holland, and Svante Weyler in Sweden. Film rights are sold to Mutz-Media.
Praise for AGAAT:
'I was immediately mesmerized by Ms. van Niekerk's novel. Its beauty matches its depth and her achievement is as brilliant as it is haunting.' -- Toni Morrison
'Van Niekerk follows the widely lauded TRIOMF with a dark, innovative epic that trudges through the depths of a South African farmwife's soul...Clearly an allegory for race relations in South Africa, the novel succeeds on numerous other grounds: a rich evocation of family dynamics; a chilling portrait of bodily and mental decay; and a successful experiment in combining diaries, the second-person, and stream of consciousness. Van Niekerk marshals it all to evoke the resigned mind of a dying woman who realizes, too late, the horrible mistakes that have made her life a waste.' -- Publishers Weekly starred review
'This novel stuns with its powerful sense of the rigors of farm life, desolation of a failing marriage, and comfort of a long and complex relationship.' -- Vanessa Bush, Booklist starred review