Nicol Hochholczer's debut This Room Can't Be Eaten nominated for the prestigious Angelus Prize

Out of 120 books shortlisted for the 19th edition of the Central European Angelus Literary Prize, the jury selected fourteen.

The jury will announce the final seven in early September and this year's winner on 19 October. The author of the winning book will receive a prize of 150,000 zlotys (approximately 35,000 euros).

The Central European Angelus Literary Prize was founded in 2006 by the Polish city of Wrocław. It is awarded annually for the best prose books written in Polish or translated into Polish by living authors from Central Europe.                       

Nicol Hochholczer's novel This Room Can't Be Eaten (KK Bagala, 2021) has become one of the most talked-about literary events in Slovakia. It was included in the top five finalists of the Anasoft Litera Award 2022 and Hochholczer also received the Tatra banka Foundation award in the Young Creator category.

The book was published in Poland by Ha!art in 2023 as Tego pokoju nie da się zjeść  (translated by Rafał Bukowicz).

The book, at once poetic and emotionally raw, with the controversial theme of an unequal and manipulative relationship between a teenage girl and an older man has been translated into many languages: Ukrainian, Bulgarian, Serbian, Czech and Hungarian. Translations into German, English, French and Macedonian are in preparation.

In addition to the Slovak author, this year's nominees include three books from Poland, and two nominations each from Moldova, Romania and Ukraine. Other nominations are from authors from Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Austria, Hungary and Russia. 

Last year, the novel by Slovak author Katarína Kucbelová, Čepiec / The Bonnet (Slovart, 2019), which was published in Polish in a translation by Katarzyna Dudzic-Grabińska (Ha!art, 2022), also received a nomination. In 2014, Slovak writer Pavol Rankov won the Angelus Prize for his novel Stalo sa prvého septembra (alebo inokedy), published by Kalligram in 2008 and translated into Polish by Tomasz Grabiński as Zdarzyło się pierwszego września (albo kiedy indziej) for the Slowackie Klimaty publishing house.


This year's nominations were decided by a jury chaired by the Austrian writer and translator of Polish literature Martin Pollack, who is the recipient of the Angelus Prize 2007. The other members of the jury are Wojciech Browarny, a literary scholar and professor at the University of Wrocław; Kinga Dunin, a sociologist, journalist and literary critic; Michał Nogaś, a journalist; Mykola Ryabchuk, a Ukrainian literary critic and essayist; Justyna Sobolewska, a literary critic and journalist; and Andrzej Zawada, a literary critic and historian.

A list of all the nominees for Angelus 2024 can be found here:

Foto credit: Jakub Gulyas