Olga Tokarczuk has become the first Polish writer to win the Man Booker International Prize.
Her novel, Flights took home the £50,000 prize. She will split it with her translator Jennifer Croft.
As reported from the press release:
Olga Tokarczuk is a multiple award winner and bestseller in Poland whose work is now gaining recognition in the English-speaking world. She trained as a psychologist at the University of Warsaw, and her interest in Jung continues to influence her work. Her first book, a collection of poems, was published in 1989. She is the author of eight novels and two short-story collections. Alongside her writing she co-hosts a boutique literary festival near her home in Lower Silesia in southern Poland.
Jennifer Croft translates from Polish, Spanish and Ukrainian, having studied for an MFA in Literary Translation at the University of Iowa and lived in Argentina and Poland. Now resident in Los Angeles, she is a founding editor of the Buenos Aires Review.
Flights is a novel of linked fragments, from the 17th century to the present day, connected by themes of travel and human anatomy
The Financial Times called Flights ‘A philosophical tale for our frantic times’. Adam Mars-Jones wrote of it in the London Review of Books: ‘Flights could almost be an inventory of the ways narrative can serve a writer short of, and beyond, telling a story. The book’s prose is a lucid medium in which narrative crystals grow to an ideal size, independent structures not disturbing the balance of the whole.’ “