Flemish author Bart Moeyaert wins Swedish award for youth literature

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Bart Moeyaert, Flemish child and youth book writer and poet, was on Tuesday announced as the winner of the 2019 Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award, an international prize for children's and young people's literature.

Moeyaert's large and diverse body of work includes more than 50 titles, ranging from picture books and young adult novels to poetry. "Everybody's Sorry Nowadays (2018)", " It's Love We Don't Understand (1999)", "Bare Hands (1995)", and "Brothers (2002)" are some of his well-known works.

Moeyaert's great interest in music has also influenced his writing in many ways. A number of his books were inspired by a specific genre of song. He also writes television screenplays and stage plays, has translated a number of novels, and teaches creative writing.

"Bart Moeyaert's condensed and musical language vibrates with suppressed emotions and unspoken desires. He portrays relationships at crisis point with a cinematic immediacy, even as his complex narratives suggest new ways forward. Bart Moeyaert's luminous work underscores the fact that books for children and young people have a self-evident place in world literature," the jury said in a citation.

"He prefers to show us life in all its many facets. He treats existential questions in a realistic, poetic and thought-provoking way. His books draw no easy lines between good and evil," the citation added.

The Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award was founded by the Swedish government in 2002 and is administrated by the Swedish Arts Council. The award will be presented by H.R.H. Crown Princess Victoria in a ceremony at the Stockholm Concert Hall on May 27. 

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