Israeli author wins British fiction prize

By Jennifer Lipman, May 15, 2012

A novel about the friendship between a Jewish child and prostitute at a brothel during the Holocaust has been honoured with a £10,000 for fiction.

Israeli author Aharon Appelfeld was named the winner of this year's Independent Foreign Fiction Award. His book, Blooms of Darkness, triumphed over five others including Umberto Eco's The Prague Cemetery.

Mr Appelfeld, 80, is a Holocaust survivor who spent the war hiding from the Nazis in the Ukrainian forests.

The book's translator, Jeffrey M Green, told the Independent that if the book had not been excellent, "even an excellent translation would not have won this prize, but a bad translation would certainly have destroyed the excellence of the original".

Last updated: 12:30pm, May 15 2012