Abid Raja receives Norwegian Booksellers’ Prize for book “My Guilt”

Abid RajaPhoto: Ørn E. Borgen / NTB
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Liberal Party politician and former Minister of Culture Abid Raja (V) has received the Norwegian Booksellers’ Prize (Bokhandlerprisen) 2021 for the book “Min skyld: En historie om frigjøring (“My Guilt: A Story of Liberation”).

Employees at bookstores across the country vote annually for their favorite among Norwegian books published that year.

In 2021, Raja’s book was one of ten finalists.

Upon winning, the former minister received a bronze statuette titled Takk for boken (Thank You for the Books) by sculptor Nils Aas.

“On behalf of Norwegian booksellers, I want to thank you for this important and well-written book. This was a reading experience that surprises and touches, and I hope My Guilt: A Story of Liberation gets many readers like it deserves,” said Anne Schiøtz of the Norwegian Booksellers Association (Bokhandlerforeningen) in a press release about the award.

Raja wrote in a comment that he is deeply grateful to have been promoted in this way by Norwegian booksellers.

“When I was a child, it was the librarians who created the joy of reading for me. They and the booksellers have a lot in common; they open up universes for readers, readers who need guidance. But more importantly, they open up the curiosity of readers. Therefore, being nominated for this award by the booksellers is something that touches me emotionally. Because they are not only connoisseurs of literature, but they are also up to date on what is most important here and now in our time,” said Raja.

The bookstore prize was awarded this year for the 51st time.

The prize often goes to fiction books. The last time a nonfiction book was awarded the prize was in 2002, when Åsne Seierstad won with The Bookseller of Kabul (Bokhandleren i Kabul).

Source: ©️ NTB Scanpix / #NorwayTodayTravel

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