Peter Terrin

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Peter Terrin (born 3 October 1968) is a Belgian novelist, and a winner of the European Union Prize for Literature.[1] He is the author of several novels and two collections of short stories.


Terrin's first novel, Kras ("Scratch") was published in 2001, and his 2003 novel Blanco ("Blank"), described as a "Kafka-like reality breakdown" and translated into Swedish in 2006[2] was his breakthrough.[3] Knack, a Belgian weekly that Terrin blogged for, described Blanco as the best Dutch-language novel about the father-son relationship since Ferdinand Bordewijk's Karakter.[4] His third novel, Vrouwen en kinderen eerst ("Women and Children First") was published in 2004.

Terrin's 2009 novel De bewaker (translated into English in 2012, "The Guard"), called a "coldly beautiful, dystopian allegory" by Eileen Battersby in The Irish Times,[5] won the European Union Prize for Literature in 2010,[1] and his novel Post mortem won the 2012 AKO Literatuurprijs.[4]

Terrin cites Willem Frederik Hermans as an important influence for his minimalist style, and critics have recognized the influence of J. Bernlef in his prose.[4]

Published books[edit]


  • Kras ("Scratch"), 2001[3]
  • Blanco ("Blank"), 2003 (trans. into Swedish)[3]
  • Vrouwen en kinderen eerst ("Women and Children First"), 2004[3]
  • De bewaker ("The Guard"), 2009 (trans. into English, Italian, French, German, Slovenian, Hebrew, Hungarian, Romanian, Serbian, Czech, Bulgarian, Croatian, Catalan)[3]
  • Post mortem, 2012
  • Monte Carlo, 2014
  • Yucca, 2016
  • Patricia, 2018

Short stories[edit]

  • De code ("The Code"), 1998[3]
  • De bijeneters ("The Bee Eaters"), 2006[3]


  1. ^ a b "Peter Terrin - European Union Prize for Literature". European Union. Archived from the original on 29 November 2012. Retrieved 30 October 2012.
  2. ^ Werkmäster, Johan (16 September 2009). "Recension: Peter Terrin - Blanko". Göteborgsposten (in Swedish). Retrieved 30 October 2012.
  3. ^ a b c d e f g "Peter Terrin". Nederlands Letterenfonds. Retrieved 30 October 2012.
  4. ^ a b c Hellemans, Frank (30 October 2012). "Post mortem groet Peter Terrin J.Bernlef". Knack (in Dutch). Retrieved 30 October 2012.
  5. ^ Battersby, Eileen (20 October 2012). "Taking care of the tower in European style". The Irish Times. Retrieved 30 October 2012.