[from: Yahoo News]
Mario Vargas Llosa wins Nobel literature prize
STOCKHOLM – Peruvian Mario Vargas Llosa won the 2010 Nobel Prize in literature on Thursday as the academy honored one of the Spanish-speaking world’s most acclaimed authors and an outspoken political activist who once came close to being elected president of his tumultuous homeland.
Vargas Llosa, 74, has written more than 30 novels, plays and essays, including “Conversation in the Cathedral” and “The Green House.” In 1995, he won the Cervantes Prize, the most distinguished literary honor in Spanish.
“I am very surprised, I did not expect this,” Vargas Llosa told Spanish National Radio, adding he thought it was a joke when he received the call.
“It had been years since my name was even mentioned,” he added. “It has certainly been a total surprise, a very pleasant surprise, but a surprise nonetheless.”
The Swedish Academy said it honored him for mapping the “structures of power and (for) his trenchant images of the individual’s resistance, revolt and defeat.” Its permanent secretary, Peter Englund, called him “a divinely gifted storyteller” whose writing touched the reader.
Vargas Llosa is the first South American winner of the prestigious 10 million kronor ($1.5 million) Nobel Prize in literature since Colombian writer Gabriel Garcia Marquez won in 1982.