Yuri Andrukhovych, Sashko Dermansky and Andrii Bondar win BBC News Ukraine 2018 Book awards

By Svitlana  Pyrkalo
@pyrkalo

At a ceremony in Kiev, “Lovers of Justice” by Yuri Andrukhovych was named BBC Book of the Year, “Mary” by Sashko Dermansky – BBC Children’s Book of the Year, and Andrii Bondar’s “Tserebro” – BBC Book of the Year – Essays.

BBC News Ukraine has announced the winners of its Book of the Year 2018 awards presented in partnership with the Cultural Programme of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD).

At a ceremony in Kiev, “Lovers of Justice” (“Коханці Юстиції”) by Yuri Andrukhovych was named BBC Book of the Year, “Mary” (“Мері”) by Sashko DermanskyBBC Children’s Book of the Year, and Andrii Bondar’s “Tserebro”(“Церебро”) – BBC Book of the Year – Essays, a category added to the accolade this year.

The awards were judged by:    

  • Vira Ageyeva, professor, Ukraine National University “Kiev-Mohyla Academy”
  • Olga Gerasymiuk, journalist, member of Ukraine National Council for TV and Radio Broadcasting
  • Taras Lyuty, philosopher, writer
  • Svitlana Pyrkalo, EBRD cultural advisor
  • Marta Shokalo, BBC News Ukraine desk editor, awards coordinator
  • Vitaliy Zhezhera, writer, journalist. 

BBC News Ukraine Editor, Nina Kuryata, comments on the BBC Book of the Year winner, “Lovers of Justice”:  “Yuri Andrukhovich’s protagonists are going through extreme and tragic events. Rebels and idealists seeking truth, they strive to bring justice, as they see it, to an imperfect world. Facing dark forces that can ruin their lives, only determined heroes can face such challenges with dignity and grace. Combining historical background with mysticism and legend, the author has created a uniquely engaging narrative, delving into great passions and secrets of the human soul.”

In a first for the Awards, essays were added to this year’s nominations. Marta Shokalo comments on Andrii Bondar’s winning title, “Tserebro”:  “In Bondar’s writing, common, everyday things acquire a new meaning. The line between reality and fiction is very subtle. The author finds himself in grotesque and tragicomic situations where philosophic irony is the only way out. He manages to turn even a hopeless adventure into a wonderful story.”

The BBC Book of the Year awards’ partnership with the Cultural Programme of the EBRD started in 2012 when BBC Children’s Book of the Year category was added to the accolade.

EBRD Managing Director for Communications, Jonathan Charles, says: “We are pleased that this year’s winning Children’s Book talks about teamwork, love and hope. Sashko Dermansky’s modern fairy tale ‘Mary’ tells us how true friendship – even with a horse or a water demon – and genuine courage can help us become who we were always meant to be, and to recover our stolen voice.”

The winning author in each category is awarded a Ukrainian hryvnya equivalent of £1,000. The publishers of the BBC Book of the Year, BBC Children’s Book of the Year and BBC Book of the Year – Essays will have the right to use the logos of the BBC News Ukraine book awards on subsequent editions.

The Reader of the Year 2018 prizes for the best reader reviews were awarded to: Olga Kramar for her review of Yuri Andrukhovych’s  “Lovers of Justice”; and Maryna Marchenko for her review of Andrii Kurkov’s “Gray Bees” (“Сірі бджоли”) .  The reviewers will each receive a Kindle EBook.  

BBC Book of the Year 2017 winners were: “The Land of the Lost, or The Little Terrible Tales” (“Земля загублених, або маленькі страшні казки”) by Kateryna Kalytko (Book of the Year) and “Comp and Company” (“Комп і компанія”) by Anna Korshunova (Children’s Book of the Year).