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Andrew O'Hagan (born 1968) is a Scottish writer and novelist. He was selected by the literary magazine Granta for inclusion in their 2003 list of the top 20 young British novelists.

Life and career

Andrew O'Hagan was born in Glasgowmarker, Scotlandmarker and grew up in Kilwinningmarker, North Ayrshire. He was a pupil at St Michael's Academy before studying at the University of Strathclyde. In 1991, he joined the staff of the London Review of Books, one of the UK's leading literary publications, and worked there for four years.

In 1995, he published his first book, The Missing, to considerable critical acclaim. A genre-crossing book which explored the lives of people who have gone missing in Britain and the families that they left behind, The Missing was shortlisted for three literary awards. It was later filmed as a Channel 4 drama-documentary and was nominated for a Bafta.

O'Hagan's debut novel Our Fathers (1999) was also nominated for several awards, including the Booker Prize, the Whitbread First Novel Award, and the IMPAC Literary Award. It won the Winifred Holtby Prize for Fiction. His next novel Personality (2003), which has close similarities to the life of Lena Zavaroni, won the James Tait Black Memorial Prize for fiction. That same year, O'Hagan won the E.M. Forster Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters.

His third novel, Be Near Me, was published in August 2006 by Faber and Faber (see [160719])and long-listed for the year's Booker Prize. It went on to win the Los Angeles Times Prize for Fiction 2008 and was adapted for the stage in a co-production between the National Theatre for Scotland and the Donmar Warehouse in London. It premiered in January 2009.

O'Hagan's novels are published in the United States by Houghlin Mifflin Harcourt and are translated into 15 languages.

He has also published essays, reportage, and stories in the London Review of Books, the New York Review of Books, Granta, the Guardian, and the New Yorker.

In January 2008, he edited a new selection of Robert Burns's poems for Canongate, published as A Night Out With Robert Burns. A copy was lodged in every secondary school in Scotland. He wrote and presented a three-part film on Burns for the BBC, The World According to Robert Burns, the first of which was broadcast on January 5th, 2009. Faber & Faber recently published O'Hagan's first collection of non-fiction, The Atlantic Ocean: Essays on Britain and America. The latter was shorlisted for the 2008 Saltire Book of the Year Award.

In 2001, he was named as a Goodwill Ambassador by the UK branch of UNICEF, and he has since been involved in fundraising efforts for the organization. He has travelled to the Sudan, India, Malawi and Mozambique and has joined fellow ambassadors Ewan McGregor, Ralph Fiennes, James Nesbitt, Martin Bell, and Jemima Khan in campaigning for Unicef. In 2008 he joined the prestigious Robert Burns Humanitarian Award judging panel and in January 2009 was made an honorary lifetime member of Irvine Burns Club.

O'Hagan is a Patron of the Scottish Book Trust, a board member of the George Orwell Trust, a director of the London Review of Books, and an Editor at Large of Esquire. He has been a visiting fellow in Creative Writing at Trinity College, Dublin, and in 2008 was made an honorary Doctor of Letters by the University of Strathclyde. He is represented by A.P. Watt Ltd (literary work) and Casarotto Ramsay & Associates Ltd (drama).

He lives in London and has a daughter, Nell, with his former girlfriend India Knight.




  • The Missing, 1995
  • The Atlantic Ocean: Essays, 2008

Short stories

As Editor

  • New Writing 11, 2002
  • The Weekenders: Adventures in Calcutta, 2004
  • A Night Out With Robert Burns, 2008

Book Reviews

External links


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