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Sri Lankan author Shehan Karunatilaka wins 2022 Booker Prize

Sri Lankan author Shehan Karunatilaka holds his book <em>The Seven Moons of Maali Almeida</em> at the Shaw Theatre in London on Oct. 14. On Monday, his novel won the 2022 Booker Prize.
Daniel Leal
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AFP via Getty Images
Sri Lankan author Shehan Karunatilaka holds his book The Seven Moons of Maali Almeida at the Shaw Theatre in London on Oct. 14. On Monday, his novel won the 2022 Booker Prize.

The 2022 Booker Prize was given to The Seven Moons of Maali Almeida, written by Sri Lanka's Shehan Karunatilaka. The annual award, which was given Monday evening in London, is for a work of fiction written in English and published in the U.K. and Ireland.

The panel of judges hailed Karunatilaka's novel as "a searing, mordantly funny satire set amid the murderous mayhem of a Sri Lanka beset by civil war."

Karunatilaka is one of Sri Lanka's foremost authors; his first novel, 2011's Chinaman, was quickly marked as the arrival of a significant literary force. His work has also been published in Rolling Stone, GQ and National Geographic.

The five other shortlisted nominees for the 2022 Booker Prize were Glory, by NoViolet Bulawayo of Zimbabwe; The Trees, by American novelist Percival Everett; Treacle Walker, by English novelist Alan Garner; Small Things Like These, by Irish author Claire Keegan; and Oh William!, by American novelist Elizabeth Strout.

The Booker Prize includes a £50,000 (over $56,000) award to the winner, as well as £2,500 (about $2800) awarded to each of the six shortlisted authors.

The organization also gives a separate honor, called the International Booker Prize, to a work of fiction translated into English. The 2022 award was made in June to the novel Tomb of Sand by the Indian novelist Geetanjali Shree, which was translated into English by Daisy Rockwell.

Copyright 2022 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Anastasia Tsioulcas is a reporter on NPR's Arts desk. She is intensely interested in the arts at the intersection of culture, politics, economics and identity, and primarily reports on music. Recently, she has extensively covered gender issues and #MeToo in the music industry, including backstage tumult and alleged secret deals in the wake of sexual misconduct allegations against megastar singer Plácido Domingo; gender inequity issues at the Grammy Awards and the myriad accusations of sexual misconduct against singer R. Kelly.

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