Meg Rosoff, Literary Ark 2014 participant, has won the world’s largest cash prize for
children’s literature, the Astrid Lindgren memorial award, honouring the entire
body of an author’s work.
Rosoff was one of 215 candidates from 59 countries for the 5m Swedish krona (£430,000) Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award, which goes to work “of the highest artistic quality” featuring the “humanistic values” of the late Pippi Longstocking author. The jury said her seven young adult novels, which include How I Live Now and Just In Case, “speak to the emotions as well as the intellect”, and that “in sparkling prose, she writes about the search for meaning and identity in a peculiar and bizarre world”.
Nominated for the prize in the past, Rosoff has previously said that being on the longlist was “like being invited to join an exclusive worldwide club”, but that “I wouldn’t say I’m exactly worrying about spending the money”. After winning the award, Rosoff said she couldn’t “even think about the money – I know I want to give a lot of it away, but I’m not sure to whom yet”.
Rosoff also admitted that the win was likely to make her reassess her plans to stop writing for children.
The Astrid Lindgren memorial award was founded in 2002 by the Swedish government, and has been won in the past by Shaun Tan, Maurice Sendak and Philip Pullman. Rosoff will be presented with her award on 30 May in Stockholm.