Posted on 05/24/2018 at 01:00 PM by Jeffrey Bruner
Polish author Olga Tokarczuk’s Flights has won the 2018 Man Booker International Prize.
Flights is a novel of connected fragments spanning more than 300 years and exploring “what it means to be a traveler, a wandered, a body in motion not only through space but through time.” The novel won the Nike Literary Award, one of Poland’s most prestigious honors, when it was first published in 2008.
Riverhead Books will publish an English-language edition on August 14.
The 50,000 pound prize (about $66,700 U.S.) will be divided between Tokarczuk and translator Jennifer Croft.
Flights was selected from 108 entries by a panel of five judges, led by author Lisa Appignanesi.
“Tokarczuk is a writer of wonderful wit, imagination and literary panache,” Appignanesi said. “In Flights, brilliantly translated by Jennifer Croft, by a series of startling juxtapositions she flies us through a galaxy of departures and arrivals, stories and digressions, all the while exploring matters close to the contemporary and human predicament – where only plastic escapes mortality.”
Tokarczuk, who trained as a psychologist, first published in 1989 as a poet. Her first novel, E.E., followed in 1996.
The shortlist for this year’s prize included:
Virginie Despentes (France) for Vernon Subutex 1
Han Kang (South Korea) for The White Book
László Krasznahorkai (Hungary) for The World Goes On
Antonio Muñoz Molina (Spain) for Like a Fading Shadow
Ahmed Saadawi (Iraq) for Frankenstein in Baghdad
The Man Booker International Prize honors the finest works of translated fiction.
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