Booker Prize winner Paul Lynch appointed Distinguished Writing Fellow

Paul Lynch, Distinguished Writing Fellow at Maynooth University, (Photo credit: Joel Saget)
Tuesday, February 13, 2024 - 11:45

Maynooth University is delighted to announce that 2023 Booker Prize Winner Paul Lynch has been appointed Maynooth University Distinguished Writing Fellow.
Paul Lynch is a multi-award-winning author of five novels – his Booker winner Prophet Song (2023), Red Sky in the Morning (2013), The Black Snow (2014), Grace (2017), Beyond the Sea (2019) -- making him one of Ireland’s most prolific and critically-acclaimed contemporary authors.
Prior to winning the Booker Prize in November, his novels were nominated for and have won a long list of prizes, including the Prix du Premier Roman, the Walter Scott Prize for Historical Fiction, Prix Gens de Mer and the Kerry Group Irish Novel of the Year.
Professor Alison Hood, Dean of Arts, Celtic Studies & Philosophy, said that Maynooth University was delighted with the appointment.
“Paul’s novels are testament to an extraordinary and visionary talent. Paul was Maynooth University’s Arts Council Writer-in-Residence in 2023. This appointment means that Maynooth University welcomes Paul back as a colleague in the Department of English, where he will teach on the MA in Creative Writing.”
Prophet Song, Paul’s Booker Prize-winning novel, is an act of ‘radical empathy’, envisioning a dystopian Dublin that is terrifyingly recognisable. Written in part as a response to the Syrian refugee crisis and begun when Paul was Kildare County Council Writer-in-Residence at Maynooth University, Prophet Song demonstrates the power of literature not only as a space of refuge or beauty, but as a space of devastating political commentary and, indeed, prophecy.
Novelist Esi Edugyan, the Chair of the Booker Committee, described Paul’s work in this brilliant novel: “Here the sentence is stretched to its limits – Lynch pulls off feats of language that are stunning to witness. He has the heart of a poet, using repetition and recurring motifs to create a visceral reading experience. This is a triumph of emotional storytelling, bracing and brave.”