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Prizewinners in Frankfurt Book Fair Selection

In the past few days no fewer than three authors from Flanders Literature’s selection for Frankfurt 2018 have bagged a literary prize or nomination: Peter Verhelst, Bart Moeyaert and Lenny Peeters. Our team will be present at the Frankfurt Book Fair this week to talk to foreign publishers about these books as well as a selection of other recent titles from Flanders.

'Daughter' by Lenny Peeters, 'Before Forgetting' by Peter Verhelst and 'Everyone's Sorry Nowadays' by Bart Moeyaert

Oeuvre awards for Peter Verhelst and Bart Moeyaert

Peter Verhelst is the recipient of the Sybren Poletprijs, a new literary prize worth 35,000 euro. It is an oeuvre prize for authors of experimental literary work, be it prose, poetry or theatre, in the spirit of poet and novelist Sybren Polet (1924-2015). Verhelst works across all three of these genres. His most recent book, which we will be highlighting in Frankfurt, is Before Forgetting, a novel he wrote after his mother died and a vital tribute to love, art, and resistance to sorrow.

Bart Moeyaert has been nominated for the Hans Christian Andersen Award: the highest international recognition given to an author and an illustrator of children's books. This lifetime achievement award is presented to an author and an illustrator whose complete works have made an important, lasting contribution to children's literature. The winner will be announced in the Spring of 2020. Two years ago, Moeyaert was the artistic director of the programme presented by Flanders and the Netherlands as guests of honour at the Frankfurt Book Fair. His latest novel, Everyone’s Sorry Nowadays, is an insightful portrait of a young girl who doesn’t know what to do with herself.

Award-winning debut

And finally, a powerful debut picked up an award. The Bronzen Uil 2018, a prize for the best Dutch-language debut novel, went to Daughter by Lenny Peeters. ‘This cruel book about an unsettling family relationship, written in an economical style stripped of all frills, touched us all profoundly,’ the jury wrote. The Bronzen Uil award, worth 7,000 euro and a tour of bookstores across the country, is a joint initiative of Willemsfonds and Flanders Literature.