William Trevor (1928 - 2016) was an Irish author of novels and short stories, and of plays for stage, TV and radio, rightly regarded as one of the finest writers to have emerged from modern Ireland.
Born in Mitchelstown, County Cork, and educated at Trinity College, Dublin, he worked as a teacher and an advertising copywriter, and also as a sculptor, exhibiting frequently in Dublin and London.
He wrote more than forty novels and collections of short stories, and is acclaimed in both forms of writing. His fiction, set mainly in Ireland and England, ranges from black comedies to stories exploring Irish history and politics, and often contain a subversive undertone. His early novels include The Old Boys, winner of the Hawthornden Prize, and The Children of Dynmouth and Fools of Fortune both won the Whitbread Novel Award. Felicia's Journey, the story of a young Irish girl who becomes the victim of a sexual sociopath, won both the Whitbread Book of the Year and the Sunday Express Book of the Year awards.
His short story collection The Hill Bachelors won both the PEN/Macmillan Silver Pen Award for Short Stories and the Irish Times Irish Literature Prize for Fiction. Overall he won the Whitbread Prize three times and was nominated five times for the Booker Prize, the last for his novel Love and Summer (2009), which was also shortlisted for the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award in 2011.
His short stories are widely regarded as the finest of his generation, and have been widely anthologised; he has adapted a number for the stage, television and radio. Since 2002, when non-American authors became eligible to compete for the O. Henry Award, hewon the award four times, for his stories Sacred Statues (2002), The Dressmaker's Child (2006), The Room (2007), a juror favourite of that year, and Folie à Deux (2008). His entire output of short fiction was published in a two-volume hardback edition of Collected Stories in 2009.
In addition to his many literary awards, he was presented with an honorary KBE in 2002 for his services to literature, and made a Companion of Literature in 1994. He was also a member of the Irish Academy of Letters, and was awarded the David Cohen British Literature Prize by the Arts Council of England in 1999 in recognition of his work. He died in November 2016 at his home in Devon, where he had lived since the 1950s.