Beyond the Sea, published as Au Delà de la Mer by Albin Michel in France, has won the 2022 Prix Gens de Mer, a prize dedicated entirely to maritime fiction and non-fiction.
The prize, awarded as part of the Etonnant Voyager literary festival, took place on board a boat on the quays of Saint-Malo. For the first time in 17 editions of the prize, the book was chosen unanimously by the jury.
Paul Lynch said: "I am thrilled to learn that my novel BEYOND THE SEA has won France's Prix Gens de Mer, but it should be said that my translator, Marina Boraso, is the true winner of this award as these are her words on the page. Without translators, who are poorly paid, and the work of Sinéad MacAodha and Literature Ireland which provides grants, Irish writers would have no voice beyond the English language. I feel very fortunate to have Marina translate my work".
The jury was made up of personalities from the literary and maritime world in France:
Michèle Polak , antiquarian bookseller, president of the 2021 jury
Isabelle Autissier , navigator, journalist, writer, 2006 winner
Alain Hugues , navigator, shipyard manager, author
Jean-Michel Le Boulanger , teacher, writer, President of Etonnants Voyageurs;
Nono , alias Joël Auvin, professor, author, cartoonist;
Patrick Soisson , from the Académie de Marine, President of the Compagnie des Pêches
Benoît Heimermann , publisher, author, winner 2019
Philippe Joubin , author, representing Groupe Ouest-France, media partner
Loïc Josse , author, former bookseller, prize secretary