Polish author, Olga Tokarczuk, has been name the winner of the 2018 Man Booker International Prize at a ceremony at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London.
Olga Tokarczuk is a multiple award winner and bestseller in Poland whose work is now gaining recognition in the English-speaking world. Her first book, a collection of poems, was published in 1989. She is the author of eight novels and two short-story collections. Her winning novel, 'Flights' is set across the 17th century to the present day and is connected by themes of travel and human anatomy.
A panel of five judges chose from 108 submissions for the international award. Lisa Appignanesi OBE, author and cultural commentator chaired the judges who also consisted of: Michael Hofmann, poet, reviewer and translator from German; Hari Kunzru, author of five novels including The Impressionist and White Tears; Tim Martin, journalist and literary critic, and Helen Oyeyemi, author of novels, plays and short stories including The Icarus Girl.
Lisa Appignanesi comments: ‘Our deliberations were hardly easy, since our shortlist was such a strong one. But I’m very pleased to say that we decided on the great Polish writer Olga Tokarczuk as our winner: Tokarczuk is a writer of wonderful wit, imagination and literary panache. 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.’