The names of the winners of the 2009 Commonwealth Writers' Prize were recently unveiled at the Auckland Writers and Readers Festival. The two winners received their prizes from the Governor-General of New Zealand, the Hon Sir Anand Satyanand. Best Book winner Christos Tsiolkas received a prize of £10,000, while Best First Book winner Mohammed Hanif claimed £5,000.
The announcement came at the culmination of a week-long series of events in New Zealand where the regional winning writers from Australia, Canada, New Zealand, Nigeria, Pakistan, and South Africa gave readings, took part in public Q&A sessions, and visited schools and prisons in Auckland, Napier, and Wellington.
The Commonwealth Writers' Prize aims to reward the best Commonwealth fiction written in English by both established and new writers and to take their works to a global audience. It is sponsored and organized by the Commonwealth Foundation with the support of the Macquarie Group Foundation.