Te Gussinklo and Scheijen Win BookSpot Literature Prize
Dutch writers Wessel te Gussinklo and Sjeng Scheijen have won the 2019 BookSpot Literature Prize. Te Gussinklo was awarded in the fiction category for his book De hoogstapelaar (The highest stacker). De avant-gardisten (The Avant-Gardists) by Scheijen won the prize for the best non-fiction book. The only Flemish nominee, Lieve Joris, returned home empty-handed.
The Bookspot Literature Prize, named after the online bookstore and book club, is one of the most important literary prizes in the Dutch-speaking world. It is the successor to the ECI Literature Prize and the AKO Literature Prize. For the first time, a prize was awarded in the non-fiction category.
In the novel De hoogstapelaar, which takes place in the 1950s, the seventeen-year-old protagonist Ewout Meyster wants to impress his surroundings, both pompously and in vain.
In De avant-gardisten, we read how revolutionary Russian artists such as Malevich were manipulated by the system in the first half of the 20th century.
Te Gussinklo and Scheijen both receive an amount of 50,000 euros. The other nominated authors each receive an amount of 2,500 euros.
Otmars zonen (Otmar's sons) of Peter Buwalda won this year’s BookSpot Reader Award. A jury of fifty readers from the Netherlands and Flanders rewarded his book with an amount of 10,000 euros.
Last year Tommy Wieringa received the BookSpot Literature Prize for the fiction book De heilige Rita (The blessed Rita). The year before, Koen Peeters won with De mensengenezer (The People Healer) when the prize was still called the ECI Literature Prize.