Luuk Gruwez

Luuk Gruwez (b. 1953) made his debut in 1973 with the collection Stofzuigergedichten (Vacuum Cleaner Poetry) in 1973. Several collections of poems have been published since. With fellow-author Eriek Verpale he compiled the collections of letters and stories Onder vier ogen (In Private) and Siamees dagboek (Siamese Diary). His poetic style is often described as sensual and earthly. The collection Dikke mensen (Fat People, 1990) is an ode to men’s vulnerability and weakness; for Vuile manieren (Filthy Manners, 1995) he was awarded the Hugues C. Pernath Prize. In 1995, he received the Geertjan Lubberhuizen Award for his moving compilation of stories, memories and portraits Het bal van opa Bing (Grandpa Bing’s Ball). Its seven chapters demonstrate his skills as a pitiless and yet loving portraitist. He presents his readers with a colourful variety of real or imaginary characters who have influenced his evolution from poet to prose writer and storyteller.

Land of Cheeks

(De Arbeiderspers, 1998, 168 pages)

The Flemish poet and prose-writer Luuk Gruwez is a writer who sets great store by his style and composition. Het land van de wangen is a logical sequel to his prize-winning prose debut. The greater part of the book is written as a journal, secretly kept up to date in the lavatory while paying his weekly visit to his grandparents - ‘helping them to die’.

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