Palestinian-Icelandic author Mazen Maarouf has been nominated for the Man Booker International Prize, RÚV reports. Mazen was nominated for his short story collection Jokes for the Gunmen (trans. from the Arabic by Jonathan Wright).
Thirteen books are nominated for the Man Booker Prize every year. The shortlist of nominees will be announced on April 9, followed by the announcement of the winner on May 21. This year’s winner will receive £500,000 [ISK 77.9 million; $665,247; €586,817].
Described as a collection describing “life in a war zone” styled “in the vein of Roald Dahl, Etgar Keret and Amy Hempel,” Jokes for the Gunmen was characterized by the Man Booker judges as “A beautifully textured and absurdist gaze on human inventiveness and defiance in the midst of war’s traumas.”
Mazen has been an Icelandic citizen since 2013. He was granted an ICORN (International Cities of Refuge Network) residency in Reykjavík in 2011 “after he started receiving death threats after reporting on the death of a fellow journalist.” He is the author of three poetry collections and two short story collections.