Belgian author wins Swedish children's literature prize
Belgian illustrator and author Kitty Crowther was Wednesday named winner of the 2010 Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award, a literary prize named in honour of the Swedish creator of numerous popular fiction characters, including Pippi Longstocking, DPA reported.
Worth 5 million kronor (689,000 dollars), it is considered one of the largest literary awards for children and young people.
Crowther, 39, was cited as a "master of line but also of atmosphere."
She maintains "the tradition of the picture book while transforming and renewing it. In her world, the door between imagination and reality is wide open," the jury said.
Crowther, who has an English father and Swedish mother, lives with her two sons near Brussels. She made her debut at age 24 and has published some 35 titles, including Jim and Jack, Scritch scratch dip clapote!, Then, and My friend Juan.
Most were first published in Belgium or France - in Dutch and French - but are being translated into other languages. She has also illustrated works by Toon Tellegen, Carl Norac and Andre Neve.
The Swedish government created the prize in 2002 to award writers, illustrators of literature for children and young people and those who promote reading through work that reflects the spirit of the Swedish author Lindgren who died 2002 at age 94.
The announcement Wednesday was made in the town Vimmerby in southern Sweden, where Lindgren spent her childhood.
Palestinian reading promotion group, the Tamer Institute for Community Education, won the award in 2009.