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Literature

Polish Nobel Winner Vying for International Booker Prize

LONDON — Polish Nobel literature laureate Olga Tokarczuk and Israeli novelist David Grossman are both in the running, for a second time, for the International Booker Prize for fiction in English translation.

Tokarczuk’s “The Books of Jacob” and Grossman’s “More Than I Love My Life” are among 13 books on the long list for the award, whose 50,000-pound ($66,000) prize money is split between a book’s author and its translator.

Both are previous winners: Grossman in 2017 for “A Horse Walks into a Bar” and Tokarczuk for “Flights” in 2018, the same year she was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature.

The list announced Thursday features works from 12 countries on four continents, including “Tomb of Sand” by India’s Geetanjali Shree; “Heaven” by Japan’s Mieko Kawakami; “After the Sun” by Denmark’s Jonas Eika; and “Elena Knows” by Claudia Piñeiro of Argentina.

Translator Frank Wynne, who is chairing the judging panel, said the books circled the globe and ranged “from the intimate to the epic, the numinous to the profane.”

Six finalists are set to be revealed on April 7 and the winner will be announced on May 26.

The International Booker Prize is awarded every year to a book of fiction in any language that is translated into English and published in the U.K. or Ireland. It is run alongside the Booker Prize for English-language fiction.

Last year’s winner was “At Night All Blood is Black,” the story of a Senegalese soldier in World War I by French writer David Diop.

 

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