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Georgi Gospodinov’s ‘Time Shelter’ Bags The 2023 Booker Prize

Salva Mubarak
Senior Features Writer

The winner of the International Booker Prize 2023 has been announced and, for the first time ever, a Bulgarian author has bagged the award.

Author Georgi Gospodinov’s Time Shelter’s English translation by Angela Rodel was named the winner of the prestigious International Booker Prize this year.

Gospodinov and Rodel beat five other finalists to the prize. Last year, Indian author Geetanjali Shree and American translator Daisy Rockwell won the award for the book Tomb of Sand.

Time Shelter is a dark comedy following an imaginary clinic that recreates the past, with each floor reproducing a different decade. Originally intended to be a way for people with dementia to unlock their memories, it soon becomes a magnet for people who want to escape the modern world.

Gospodinov is one of Bulgaria’s most-translated authors and has won other prestigious honours, like Italy’s Strega European Prize for Literature in Italian for Time Shelter.

The 50,000 pounds (INR 52 Lakh approx) prize money from the International Booker Prize win will be divided equally between the author and the translator.

The International Booker Prize is awarded every year to a translated work of fiction published in the UK or Ireland. It was originally set up to promote fictional work in other languages and to highlight the oft-overlooked work of literary translators.