For his novel I will return Adriaan van Dis has been awarded the Libris Literature Reward, the most prestigious annual award for Dutch novels. I will return explores the relationship between a writer and his 98-year-old mother. As the always distant mother approaches the end of her life she is persuaded to open up about the hardships which plagued her life. She makes a deal with her son, she tells him her life-story and he will provide her with a peaceful death through pills.
According to the jury the award is bestowed upon ‘an exceptional novel, which in a both tragic and comical fashion digs toward the essence of humanity’. The Libris Literature Award is modelled after the Booker Prize and for the last 25 years awarded to the best Dutch novel from a shortlist of six nominees.
Van Dis received a €50,000 cheque as well as a bronze medal. The medal, which is the tangible reminder of the reward, is designed by 2014 Johannes Vermeer Prize-winner Irma Boom. The other nominees were Esther Gerritsen with Roxy, Kees ‘t Hart with Teatro Olimpico, Gustaaf Peek with Goddess, Hero, Peter Terrin with Monte Carlo and Niña Weijers with her debut The Consequences. Last year’s winner was La Superba by Ilja Leonhard Pfeijffer.