British novelist Kazuo Ishiguro was announced the winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature for 2017 for his “outstanding contributions in literature”.
The announcement was made by Swedish Academy permanent secretary Sara Danius, who is a Swedish scholar of literature and aesthetics.
On its website the Swedish Academy praised Ishiguro for his “novels of great emotional force”.
The academy added that the author had “uncovered the abyss beneath our illusory sense of connection with the world”.
His most famous novels The Remains of the Day and Never Let Me Go were adapted into highly acclaimed films and he was made an OBE in 1995.
Ishiguro has written eight books that have been translated into more than 40 languages.
Born in Japan, he moved to England in 1960 at the age of five.
Ishiguro is one of the most celebrated contemporary fiction authors in the English-speaking world, having received four Man Booker Prize nominations and winning the 1989 award for his novel The Remains of the Day.
His seventh novel, The Buried Giant, was published in 2015.
Some may consider Ishiguro a surprise choice with names such as Margaret Atwood, Ngugi Wa Thiong’o and Haruki Murakami leading the odds at the bookmakers.
However, he is a welcome choice after last year’s controversial selection of Bob Dylan, who himself questioned the reasoning behind being awarded the world’s most prestigious literary honour.