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November 23, 2023 41 mins
We're only three days away from finding out who will take home the Booker Prize 2023 so who better to speak to than last year's winner? Sri Lankan writer Shehan Karunatilaka won the prize for his searing satire The Seven Moons of Maali Almeida in 2022, and the 13 months since his win has been a whirlwind of activity. This week, Shehan joins us on the podcast to tell us all about the past year and what the 2023 winner can expect on the night of the award ceremony and beyond. In this episode Jo and James speak to Shehan about: What it's like to be at the Booker Prize award ceremony – and how it felt to be announced as the 2022 winner The strangeness of winning the Booker Prize amidst economic crisis and civil unrest in Sri Lanka The impossibility of making an acceptance speech in one minute Why he paints his fingernails black How he spent his prize money The whirlwind that has been the 13 months since he won the Booker Prize His daily writing and reading routine Books and authors mentioned: The Seven Moons of Maali Almeida by Shehan Karunatilaka Agatha Christie Salman Rushdie Raymond Chandler John le Carré Armistead Maupin A full transcript of the episode is available at our website. Follow The Booker Prize Podcast so you never miss an episode. Visit to find out more about us, and follow us on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and Tiktok @thebookerprizes.  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit
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