EIGHT Irish authors are among the 154 on the longlist for the world's richest literary prize -- the highest ever number.
Libraries worldwide have nominated the writers for the €100,000 International Impac Dublin Literary Award, alongside 43 American, 22 British and 12 Canadian novels.
Lord Mayor of Dublin Naoise O Muiri, the award's patron, commended its promotion of excellence in world literature and the opportunity to promote Irish writing.
"This is the highest number of translated novels, first novels and novels by Irish authors to be nominated, since the Impac Dublin Award's inception in 1996," he said.
A unique aspect of the IMPAC is that it is open to novels published in any language as long as they have also been published in translation in English. The aim is to bring interesting novels in other languages to the attention of readers in English.
"Like every year you will find new books and new authors, particularly those novels in translation that you might otherwise never come across," Mr O Muiri added.
The Irish titles are:
• 'On Canaan's Side' by Sebastian Barry, nominated by San Diego and Dublin libraries.
• 'City of Bohane' by Kevin Barry, nominated by Cork, Limerick and Dublin libraries.
• 'The Absolutist' by John Boyne, nominated by Liverpool, UK and Tampere, Finland libraries.
• 'Long Time, No See' by Dermot Healy nominated by Bergen, Norway and Moscow, Russia libraries.
• 'Cold Eye of Heaven' by Christine Dwyer Hickey, nominated by Bergen Offentlige Bibliotek, Norway.
• 'Twice Born' by (Irish/Italian) author Margaret Mazzantini, nominated by Waterford and Rome, Italy libraries.
• 'Double Talk' by Patrick Warner (now living in Canada), nominated by a St John's, Canada library.
The shortlist will be announced on April 9 next year with the winner being announced on June 6.
Previous Irish winners include Colm Toibin in 2006 and Colum McCann, who won the 2011 prize.