NINE 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.
The Lord Mayor of Dublin, Naoise O Muiri, patron of the award, commended its promotion of excellence in world literature and the opportunity to promote Irish writing internationally.
"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.
The nominated Irish titles are:
•On Canaan's Side, by Sebastian Barry.
•City of Bohane, by Kevin Barry.
•The Map Of Time, by Jane Gillespie (From Northern Ireland).
•The Absolutist, by John Boyne.
•The Dulang Washer, by Paul Callan.
•Long Time, No See, by Dermot Healy.
•Cold Eye of Heaven, by Christine Dwyer Hickey
•Twice Born, by (Irish/Italian) author Margaret Mazzantini.
•Double Talk, by Patrick Warner (now living in Canada).
The award is organised by Dublin City Public Libraries.
The favourite for the award is 2011 Man Booker prize winner The Sense of an Ending by Julian Barnes.
The shortlist for the Impac award will be announced on April 9 next year. The winner will be announced on June 6.