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Irish contenders

'Let the Great World Spin' by Colum McCann

Nominated by libraries in Germany, Greece, Ireland, Norway, Switzerland, Canada and the USA, McCann's novel has already won the prestigious National Book Award in the US. Centred on the Twin Towers tightrope walk by Philippe Petit in 1974, it widens into a multi-faceted portrait of New York which was hailed as the great post-9/11 novel.

'Brooklyn' by Colm Toibin

Nominated by libraries in Belgium, England, Ireland, Switzerland, South Africa, New Zealand and the USA. A huge bestseller which bridged the gap between popular and literary fiction, it tells the story of a young woman who escapes 1950s Ireland for a new life in the Irish-American community in Brooklyn, New York, only to be drawn home again by changing circumstances.

'Love and Summer' by William Trevor

Nominated by libraries in Ireland and the USA. The 14th novel by the veteran writer is as perfectly nuanced as all his work, telling the story of a young photographer and a farmer's wife in a claustrophobic small Irish town some 60 years ago.

Irish Independent