A great accomplishment for a great book, by a great authoress, and not a first with this prize for Lina. You may recall her debut novel, The Venetian was also selected for the prize back in 2012 but never made it to the final 4! It came pretty close though!
In a nutshell, the European Book Prize seeks to promote European values, and The English Scholar’s Ring is a perfect candidate as it does just that! Written well before the 2016 Brexit nightmare, Ellina invites the reader to contemplate the relationship between the two countries in an attempt to discover what the peoples of England and Cyprus share, and have shared, since the time of Richard the Lionheart and the Third Crusade.
A deeply symbolic book but at the same time, a book honoring an island, its peoples and its complex history, but with a twist. In the place of history from the perspective of empire, she presents history from the point of view of the local people suffering under the oppression of rulers, both domestic and foreign. Her history-as-novel preserves poetic and literary characteristics and even though it is seemingly driven by men, the narrative is pushed forward by women.
But don’t take our word for it. The association Spirit of Europe has shortlisted this book on its literary merits and for promoting European cultural entity.
When Armida set sails a few years ago, it set a goal: to put contemporary Cyprus literature on the global map. The English Scholar’s Ring finalist status joins a long list of accomplishments by our authors and our books. We sure know how to pick ’em!
All the best of luck to you, Lina! Your work deserves the acknowledgment it keeps receiving and we are sure we’ll be seeing you in Brussels in December!
About the award | In a nutshell, the European Book Prize seeks to promote European values, and to contribute to European citizens’ better understanding of the European Union as a cultural entity. It was created in 2007 by the association Spirit of Europe, with the support of Jacques Delors. The association Spirit of Europe, led by France Roque, organized since its inception the delivery of the Europe Book Prize every year in early December at the European Parliament in Brussels.