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Finlandia Prize goes to Ulla-Lena Lundberg

Former President Tarja Halonen has given the country’s biggest annual book award, the Finlandia Prize, to Ulla-Lena Lundberg for her work Jää (Ice). The book is a tribute to those living in the Finnish archipelago.

Ulla-Lena Lundberg
Ulla-Lena Lundberg Image: YLE

The work was originally published in Swedish and has been translated into Finnish by Leena Vallisaari.

Halonen said she fell in love with the book describing its language as “uncomplicated with a timeless quality.”   

She chose the honoree from a shortlist of six novels, five written in Finnish and one in Swedish. The other finalists included two previous Finlandia candidates in addition to Lundberg: Pirjo Hassinen, and Juha Seppälä.

The former President said the six books illustrate the breadth of the Finnish experience. Traditionally the winning Finlandia book becomes a popular Christmas gift.

The prize is worth 30,000 euros and was granted last year to Rosa Liksom for her book Hytti nro 6 (Cabin nr.6).

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