Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Richard Ford wins Blue Met's 2014 Grand Prize

We are very happy to announce that American writer Richard Ford has been awarded the 2014 Blue Metropolis International Literary Grand Prize. The prize, awarded since 2000, is given each year to a writer of international caliber. Past winners include Paul Auster, Marie-Clair Blais, A.S. Byatt, Margaret Atwood, Carlos Fuentes and others.

Ford is most recently known for his 2011 novel, Canada, which is set on the high plains of Saskatchewan
and tells the story of a young man whose life is overturned when his parents are arrested for bank robbery. It's a moving novel that shows how resilience is built into our characters, the will to survive and roll with the punches when life takes an unexpected turn.

Ford's earlier works include Independence Day, The Ultimate Good Luck (one of my personal favorites) and short story collections Rock Springs.

Richard Ford will be a part of three major events at the Festival:

On Friday, May 2, he will be interviewed on-stage at Chapters/Indigo at Montreal Trust by Fiona Downey. This event starts at 6pm and is free!

On Saturday, May 3, he will be on-stage with CBC's Michael Enright at the Bibliotheque Nationale on Maisonneuve downtown (at Berri-UQAM station). This event starts at 4pm and will include the awarding of the prize and an interview to be broadcast on CBC. Last year this event sold out before the Festival even started so get your tickets early to guarantee a spot. Tickets can be purchased at La Vitrine.

IMPAC/Dublin winner Kevin Barry
Finally, on Sunday, May 4 at 11:00am, Ford will appear with Irish writer Kevin Barry and Montreal writer Josip Novakovich at an event hosted by Slate Magazine's Stephen Metcalf: Structuring Landscape. With writers like Ford, Barry and Novakovich who all set their books in specific places that figure large in their work, the conversation should be interesting: from the plains of the prairies to pre-break up Yugoslavia to Ireland of the future. Tickets are available at La Vitrine.This event will be held at Hotel 10 in downtown Montreal.

Finally, Ford will be one of our featured readers at a very special event, A Tribute to Alice Munro. Ford, along with several others, will read an excerpt of a story by Munro as we celebrate this Canadian icon of the short-story. This is our official closing event on Sunday, May 4 at 4pm. This event will be held at Hotel 10 in downtown Montreal. Tickets will go fast for this one and can be purchased at La Vitrine.

Most Festival events (many are free) range from $7 to $15; or you can get an all-Festival pass for $65! These passes go very fast though (last year they sold out two weeks before the Festival!) so move quickly.

For the entire Festival program, go to the Blue Metropolis website and click on Festival!

A Tribute to Alice Munro, Sunday May 4 at 4pm

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