Petterson named as winner of Impac award

 

Norwegian writer Per Petterson has been named as the winner of the 2007 International Impac Dublin Literary Award.

Per Petterson, the winner of the IMPAC Dublin Literary Award, after receiving his award in Dublin today
Per Petterson, the winner of the IMPAC Dublin Literary Award, after receiving his award in Dublin today

His novel, Out Stealing Horses,wins the €100,000 prize. it was the only translated novel on the eight-strong shortlist for the award.

Anne Born, who translated it into English from the original Norwegian, will receive €25,000 of the prize.

The book, which has already won the British Independent Foreign Fiction prize, begins in 1948.

It is narrated by Trond, a solitary older man who returns to a place he knew as a boy and recalls the summer he spent there with his father when he was 15.

The subsequent events, including the accidental death of a child, his best friend's feelings of guilt and eventual disappearance and his father's decision to leave the family for another woman, change his life forever.

Petterson was born in Norway in 1952 and has written five novels, including To Siberiaand In the Wake.

Out Stealing Horsesbeat seven other shortlisted novels, including Sebastian Barry's A Long Long Way andSouth African JM Coetzee with Slow Man.

Others on the list were US writer Cormac McCarthy's No Country For Old Men; Shalimar the Clown, by Salman Rushdie; Arthur & Georgeby Julian Barnes; Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, by Jonathan Safran Foer; and The Short Day Dying, by Peter Hobbs.

The winner was selected by a panel of five international judges from 138 novels nominated across 169 library systems in 49 countries. The presentation ceremony took place in Dublin's City Hall.

Speaking after the presentation ceremony, Mr Petterson said he was notified of the win last week. "I am very thrilled," he said. "I was really very nervous. This is just a great honour. I was shocked when I received the news."

Colm Tóibín became the first Irish writer to win the award last year with The Master.

Additional reporting: PA