June 2018

Drago Jančar wins fourth Kresnik for best Slovenian novel of the year

Drago Jančar won this year's Kresnik Prize for the best novel of the past year for In Ljubezen Tudi (And Love Also), a novel about the Second World War in the city of Maribor. He has become the first author to win the prestigious accolade four times.

The author's eleventh novel, published by Beletrina, tells the stories of three people that have been marked and broken by the Second World War. The underlying message of the novel is that war beats everything, including love and poetry.

The jury headed by comparative literature professor Tone Smolej, which declared the winner on Rožnik Hill n Ljubljana, said the author "wrote a convincing war-time love vortex".

Jančar lit the traditional Midsummer bonfire in a culmination of the ceremony.

In addition to the winner, four novels were shortlisted for the prize: Vlado Žabot's Sveti Boj (Holy Fight), Vse Moje Amerike (All My Americas) by Štefan Kardoš, Gramoz (Gravel) by Florjan Lipuš and Starec in Jaz (The Old Man and Me) by Sarival Sosič.

The prize was introduced in 1991, when the winning novel was selected by a jury, but not based on a shortlist. Its name comes from a Slavic god associated with the summer solstice.