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Anamaría Crowe Serrano nominated for Republic of Consciousness Prize 2022

Writing.ie | Guest Bloggers | Wordspark


Turas Press is thrilled to announce that In The Dark, the Spanish Civil War novel by Anamaría Crowe Serrano published by Turas Press in June 2021, is one of ten books to be nominated for the Republic of Consciousness Prize, 2022. This prize rewards the best fiction published by small presses in the UK and Ireland, thus supporting writers and also, the work of small presses. As the Republic of Consciousness Mission Statement declares:

“Without them, fiction of the highest literary merit, especially experimental and innovative writing, would struggle to find a home, and by extension, readers’ choice would be impoverished.”

In The Dark, a novel set during the darkest days of the Spanish Civil War, has already garnered significant critical acclaim:

“This is a lyrical, richly-textured novel of great beauty and depth that pulses with humanity and love amid the heartbreak and desolation of war.”   Lisa Harding

“This novel does not carry a flag for any political creed, but only for the endurance of human kindness and love in the face of unbearable human cruelty.” Paddy Woodworth

Author Anamaría Crowe Serrano was both shocked and delighted when she heard the news: “I can hardly believe that my novel has reached the longlist for this very special prize,” she said.  “And I’m so happy that this award honours the small presses.”

Turas Press Director Liz McSkeane was late hearing the good news: “I only heard about it several hours after it was announced and I was stunned – in a good way – to see In The Dark on the Republic of Consciousness list. It’s a great honour, and such a boost, for Anamaría’s amazing book and for Turas Press, to get this recognition.”

Turas Press is a small publishing house which poet and novelist Liz McSkeane set up early in 2017, with the aim of bringing contemporary poetry and literary fiction to international readers. Since then, Turas Press has published 17 books by 11 writers, both poetry and literary fiction, with three more poetry collections and a collection of short stories scheduled for 2022.

About In The Dark: Teruel, north-east Spain, winter, 1937. The civil war is raging, pitting neighbour against neighbour, tearing families apart. Franco’s Nationalist rebels have surrounded the devastated, Republican-held city. The people are struggling to survive in a battle zone, enduring the coldest winter in decades. This is the story of a house, of the people who take refuge there – and a dangerous secret within. While the bombs fall and the world crumbles, María and her sister Julita, bitterly entrenched on different sides of the conflict, mourn their lost loved ones and try to bury their differences. But only one person knows the secret of the house, hidden deep in the dark – a soldier who has dared to leave the fighting to come home – and the woman who dares to protect him. In The Dark is a heart-rending tale of the bitter daily hardships of survival during war, of the struggle to extract truth from a multitude of truths – and of a love that yearns to transcend the conflict, no matter what the cost.

Order your copy online here.

About the Author: Anamaría Crowe Serrano is an Irish writer, translator and editor born in Dublin to an Irish father and a Spanish mother. She grew up bilingually, straddling cultures, in Co. Meath and did her schooling in Trim. The long summer months were spent in Spain with her grandparents and maternal relatives. Her poetry and prose has been published internationally and anthologised in Ireland and abroad. Anamaría has translated many works of poetry and novels from Spanish and Italian into English. Her poetry collections include FemispheresOne Columbus LeapOnWords and UpWords and Crunch – published by Turas Press in 2018. As she explains ‘I decided about three years ago I wanted to try and write a novel about the Spanish Civil War. I needed to understand how my kind, loving, magical grandfather had chosen to fight with the fascists. I tried asking him about three times but he always gave evasive answers. It wasn’t until I was an adult that I realised the collective silence around the war wasn’t confined to my family’.

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