Marlene van Niekerk is a South African poet and novelist.

Marlene van Niekerk was born near Caledon in South Africa’s Western Cape. She writes in Afrikaans and is best known for the novels Triomf and Agaat, which won seven literary awards in South Africa. 

She has also published several volumes of poetry and a number of short story collections.

She was a finalist for the Man Booker International Prize 2015.

Marlene van Niekerk


Between 2005 - 2015, the Man Booker International Prize recognised one writer for their achievement in fiction.

Worth £60,000, the prize was awarded every two years to a living author who had published fiction either originally in English or whose work is generally available in translation in the English language.

The winner was chosen solely at the discretion of the judging panel and there were no submissions from publishers.

The Man Booker International Prize was different from the annual Man Booker Prize for Fiction in that it highlighted one writer’s overall contribution to fiction on the world stage. In focusing on overall literary excellence, the judges considered a writer’s body of work rather than a single novel.