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Mari Hannah Wins Polari Prize

14th Nov 2013

Mari Hannah Wins Polari Prize
Mari Hannah won the 2013 Polari Prize last night for her crime novel, The Murder Wall.

The Polari Prize is awarded for a first book that explores the LGBT experience, in any genre. The prize is the brainchild of the Polari Literary Salon which holds a range of events at the Southbank Centre every month.

This year, the award’s third, saw the £1000 prize awarded to Mari Hannah, one of three women featured on the shortlist of five nominees and the second female winner in the prize’s three year history.

Included in the shortlist was Kerry Hudson’s deliciously titled Tony Hogan Bought Me an Ice-cream Float Before He Stole My Ma, winner of the 2013 First Book Prize, alongside Rebecca Idris’ self-published novel The Sitar.

The Murder Wall opens in a sleepy Northumbrian town before taking a gripping criminal tour of Britain. It’s a brilliantly plotted novel, engaging and elegantly paced.

Hannah joins a growing number of writers using the crime genre as a platform for the LGBT experience, including stalwarts of the scene Val McDermid and Patricia Cornwell.

Speaking on behalf of the judges before the ceremony, literary critic Suzi Faey said:

“The judges were delighted to see a growth in submissions this year, particularly from new female authors. From such a strong longlist, it was difficult to narrow down the choices to the final five, but we feel they represent the strongest individual voices with the most engaging tales to tell… These are books to dazzle, amuse and beguile.”