- Associated Press - Thursday, May 26, 2011

PRAGUE (AP) - Irish novelist John Banville has won the prestigious Franz Kafka Prize.

An international jury that included prominent German literary critic Marcel Reich-Ranicki and British publisher John Calder selected Banville for the prize, which is awarded annually and includes $10,000.

Past winners include the American novelist Philip Roth and Nobel laureates Elfriede Jelinek of Austria and Harold Pinter of Britain.

It is awarded by the Prague-based Franz Kafka Society to authors whose works “appeal to readers regardless of their origin, nationality and culture.”

The society said in a statement Thursday that Banville agreed to travel to Prague for an October ceremony to receive the prize.

Banville won Britain’s 2005 Man Booker fiction prize for his novel “The Sea.”