Francisco Javier Zubizarreta Dorronsoro (Patxi Zubizarreta) has been awarded the 2023 National Prize for Children’s and Youth Literature for his The sow. The jury highlights his work for the “exceptional narrative quality and the challenging power of the story with hypnotic descriptions that reflect on the human condition.” Regarding the text, he also praises the “mastery” with which he is “capable of stirring and moving our conscience, our memory and our present.”
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The recognition, granted by the Ministry of Culture and Sports, is worth 30,000 euros. “With his exquisite delicacy and elegant writing he manages to find beauty in the wound and turns literature for young audiences into a precious stone,” the committee adds about the author. Zubizarreta takes over from Rafael Salmerón López, awarded last year.
Born in Ordizia (Guipúzcoa) in 1964, the recent winner studied Basque Philology in Vitoria, the city where he has resided since then. His specialty is children’s and youth literature, but he has also written literature for adults and made translations. His first book, Dream boypublished it in 1991, which has been followed by other titles such as The boy who was a man: chance, the goshawk and the fox, On the swings, Rice and ink, Pikolo, 1948ko uda y Run, Kuru, run! (Run, Kuru, run!).
The award jury
The jury was chaired by María José Gálvez Salvador, general director of Books, Comics and Reading of the Ministry of Culture and Sports; and Jesús González González, deputy general director of Promotion of Books, Reading and Spanish Literature, has acted as vice president.
The group of members was composed by Francisco Xavier Senín Fernández, proposed by the Royal Galician Academy/Real Academia Galega; Amaia Jaureguizar Ormaechea, by the Royal Academy of the Basque Language/Euskaltzaindia; Caterina Valriu Llinàs, for the Institute of Catalan Studies/Institut d’Estudis Catalans; Artur Ahuir López, for the Academia Valenciana de la Lengua/Acadèmia Valenciana de la Llengua; Mercedes Pacheco Vázquez, for the Spanish Organization for Children’s and Young People’s Books (OEPLI); José Soto Vázquez, for the Conference of Rectors of Spanish Universities (CRUE); María del Mar Corral Martínez, for the Federation of Associations of Journalists of Spain (FAPE); Fernando Antonio Lalana Josa, for the Collegiate Association of Writers of Spain (ACE); Itziar Adelaida Pascual Ortiz, for the Feminist Research Institute of the Complutense University of Madrid; Leire Bilbao Barruetabeña, by the Ministry of Culture and Sports and Rafael Salmerón López, awarded in the 2022 call.
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