Ólafsdóttir has been awarded the prize for a work full of subtle humour and sparkling, vital language, which asks the big questions about life and death.
The jury said:
“I write against the darkness in the world,” says Auður Ava Ólafsdóttir, winner of the Nordic Council Literature Prize 2018. In the novel Ör, we encounter a middle-aged man who takes his literal and metaphorical toolbox with him to a war-torn European country, intent upon putting an end to his life. In the course of his travels, he realises that we all have our own toolbox – what matters is how we choose to use it. This is a small book with a big heart. It is full of subtle humour and sparkling, vital language, which asks the big questions about life and death, about the individual versus the collective, about our privileges, rights and duties. Ultimately, it is duty that provides humanity with the tools to challenge the darkness.
About the Nordic Council prizes
The Nordic Council awards five annual prizes: the Literature Prize, the Children and Young People’s Literature Prize, the Music Prize, the Film Prize, and the Environment Prize. The DKK 350,000 prizes are awarded at a gala event during the annual Session of the Nordic Council.