This year’s Runeberg Prize was awarded Quynh Tran, Author of Pietarsaari, from his work Skugga och svalka (English translation Shadow and Coolness).
The book reflects his own background and tells the story of a Vietnamese family in the coastal city of Ostrobothnia. Tran himself grew up in Pietarsaari, where his family moved from Vietnam in 1989.
"Tran’s novel does not blame or provide ready-made explanations, but allows the reader to interpret himself. The special-sounding novel is a refreshing addition to Finnish literature, a versatile and beautiful package."
Tran, 32, said he was shocked to receive this recognition for his first job.
"I don’t really think yet" he told Yle. "The award is a really big surprise. I’m just getting used to the idea that people are reading a book I’ve written."
The prize is worth 20,000 euros and is distributed by Uusimaa magazine, the City of Porvoo, the Finnish Writers’ Association, the Finnish Critics’ Association and the Finnish Writers’ Association.
The first prize was awarded in 1986 and is awarded on Runeberg Day, an annual celebration Johan Ludvig Runeberg, one of Finland ‘s national poets, who also has a cake named in honor.
Source: The Nordic Page