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The Literary Saloon Archive

1 - 10 June 2012

1 June: The Nation on Amazon.com | Read Russia 2012 | Science Fiction & Fantasy Translation Awards finalists
2 June: June issues | Digitized review
3 June: Martin Amis profile | Mario Vargas Llosa Q & A | Azerbaijani Museum of Literature plans
4 June: Interviews at The Oxonian Review | Summer 2012 Quarterly Conversation | Publishing in ... Israel | The Pilgrim review
5 June: 2012 translations into English: Arabic, Japanese literature | Un-censoring Burmese fiction | Laurent Binet profile | Traveler of the Century review-overview
6 June: New edition of The Forty Days of Musa Dagh | Book-discounting in ... Israel | Andrukhovych on Euro 2012
7 June: Prince of Asturias Award for Literature | Ray Bradbury (1920-2012) | 'Publishing the World' | The Day before Happiness review
8 June: Barry Unsworth (1930-2012) | Cynthia Ozick on the Orange Prize | Q & A with Roadside Picnic translator | The Gift review
9 June: Lionel Asbo reviews | Commonwealth Book Prize | Humayun Ahmed profile | Translating Roberto Ampuero
10 June: Q & A with Günter Grass biographer | Publishing in ... Israel | The Receptionist review

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10 June 2012 - Sunday

Q & A with Günter Grass biographer | Publishing in ... Israel
The Receptionist review

       Q & A with Günter Grass biographer

       At Deutsche Welle Jochen Kürten has a Q & A with Günter Grass biographer and publisher Volker Neuhaus, What drives Günter Grass ? (a question surely better put to Grass himself).
       Still, lots of fun discussion of the recent Grass-poems ......

(Posted by: M.A.Orthofer)    - permanent link -



       Publishing in ... Israel

       The Israeli debates over book-pricing, royalties, and discounting continue -- with now, as Meirav Arlosoroff reports in Haaretz, Finance Ministry suggests state fund for benefit of Israel's authors.
       Meanwhile, Benny Ziffer also weighs in in Haaretz, considering Book value.

       (Updated - 12 June): For a very different take, see Corinne Sauer's Enjoy your books while you can afford it ! in The Jerusalem Post, arguing that: 'Increasing the price of books through legislation is probably one of the worst ideas of the year from our politicians' (though note that that is, at best, a misleading formulation: it's discounting that is being prevented, rather than book prices actually being raised (though, of course, the average price paid for books will likely increase, since (almost) only full-price books will be available). (In my opinion, the cases for and against price fixing aren't nearly as clear-cut as she makes them out to be here, by the way.)

       (Updated - 13 June): In Haaretz Merav Michaeli now argues 'The book industry crisis is essentially the story of the power struggle that pervades this country's society and economy in a nutshell', in The book industry crisis represents Israel's power struggle.

(Posted by: M.A.Orthofer)    - permanent link -



       The Receptionist review

       The most recent addition to the complete review is my review of Janet Groth's The Receptionist, a new memoir that claims to relate An Education at The New Yorker.

(Posted by: M.A.Orthofer)    - permanent link -



9 June 2012 - Saturday

Lionel Asbo reviews | Commonwealth Book Prize
Humayun Ahmed profile | Translating Roberto Ampuero

       Lionel Asbo reviews

       Martin Amis' Lionel Asbo is out in the UK -- get your copy at Amazon.co.uk, or, in the US, where it's due out in August, pre-order your copy at Amazon.com -- and the first reviews are coming in:
  • In the Daily Express Christopher Bray finds: "Like Lionel himself, itís not that bad but itís just not that good either."

  • In the Evening Standard David Sexton thinks: "Itís a hoot."

  • In the Financial Times Lionel Shriver writes: "I hate to say this, because my hopes were high, but this novel becomes well and truly dull. Amis simply doesnít do much with the premise beyond what most readers could concoct for themselves."

  • In The Guardian Theo Tait finds: "The stranger Lionel Asbo gets, the less it seems like a convincing indictment of England today -- and the more it seems that Amis should have a nice lie down in a darkened room. But there are plenty of consolations".

  • D.J.Taylor reviews it in The Independent

  • Claire Allfree reviews it in Metro
       (I haven't seen a copy yet, but hope to eventually get to it).

       (Updated - 10 June): See now also reviews:
  • In the Independent on Sunday, where Amanda Craig finds: "The trouble with Lionel Asbo is that this underworld, with its tawdry dreams and supposed absence of morals, is so easy to send up that reading it feels like Amis is shooting fish in a barrel."

  • In Scotland on Sunday, where Aidan Smith reviews it
       (Updated - 14 June): See now also reviews:
  • In the London Review of Books, where Adam Mars-Jones reviews it

  • In the New Statesman, where Leo Robson reviews it

(Posted by: M.A.Orthofer)    - permanent link -



       Commonwealth Book Prize

       They've announced that Chinaman -- now also available in the US, as the Legend of Pradeep Mathew -- by Shehan Karunatilaka has been awarded the 2012 Commonwealth Book Prize.
       This prize is awarded for a best first book by a writer holding Commonwealth country citizenship -- meaning writers from the Republic of Ireland and Zimbabwe are not eligible (unlike the Man Booker Prize, for which they are eligible), while writers from Mozambique (that's right, Mozambique) are .....

(Posted by: M.A.Orthofer)    - permanent link -



       Humayun Ahmed profile

       In The Daily Star Rashid Askari writes about The genius of Humayun Ahmed, noting that:
Humayun Ahmed is, now, easily the most popular writer in Bangladesha superstar author with a prolific following of fans. Most of the younger generation are Humayun-mad. They are passionate devotees of his writing. Not only do they read him voraciously, they also get influenced by it. Perhaps no other writer in Bangladesh has exerted such a powerful influence on readers as Humayun has.
       But:
If popularity is the yardstick of a writer's quality, Humayun Ahmed could be the greatest writer in Bangladesh, and one of the greatest writers of Bengali literature. But connoisseurs of literature won't surely agree. They are used to taking popularity mostly in negative connotations.
       (He's also had some recent legal-political troubles with his latest book.)
       Nothing of his is readily available in English (because, you know, he comes from a country of only some 150,000,000 people, and writes in a language with a long, impressive literary history that's only the sixth-most widely-spoken in the world ...).

(Posted by: M.A.Orthofer)    - permanent link -



       Translating Roberto Ampuero

       I'm very much looking forward to Roberto Ampuero's The Neruda Case -- due out next week; see the Riverhead publicity page, or get your copy at Amazon.com or Amazon.co.uk -- and in Publishers Weekly the translator of the book, Carolina De Robertis, writes about Translating a Pablo Neruda Mystery.
       Sounds promising that she's able to say:
Translating this book was a blast. Its exuberant tone and warm satire, the gripping action juxtaposed with lyrical passages, made for dynamic company, day after day.
       (PW also gave it a starred review.)

(Posted by: M.A.Orthofer)    - permanent link -



8 June 2012 - Friday

Barry Unsworth (1930-2012) | Cynthia Ozick on the Orange Prize
Q & A with Roadside Picnic translator | The Gift review

       Barry Unsworth (1930-2012)

       Booker-winning author Barry Unsworth has passed away; see, for example, The New York Times obituary.
       None of his books are under review at the complete review; I've read a couple, but never really took to his kind of historical writing; also -- despite Helen Mirren playing in it -- I really hated the film adaptation of Pascali's Island.

(Posted by: M.A.Orthofer)    - permanent link -



       Cynthia Ozick on the Orange Prize

       Cynthia Ozick -- recently shortlisted for the all-women is-it-still-called-the-Orange-this-week-? Prize for Fiction -- considers whether considering just books written by women makes for Prize or Prejudice in an op-ed piece for The New York Times.
       Her conclusion ?
For readers and writers, in sum, the more prizes the better, however they are structured, and philosophy be damned.

(Posted by: M.A.Orthofer)    - permanent link -



       Q & A with Roadside Picnic translator

       At Books & Culture John Wilson has A conversation with translator Olena Bormashenko, about her new translation of Arkady and Boris Strugatsky's classic, Roadside Picnic [via]

(Posted by: M.A.Orthofer)    - permanent link -



       The Gift review

       The most recent addition to the complete review is my review of Florence Noiville's short novel, The Gift, now coming out in English from Northwestern University Press.

       (It was amusing reading this after coming across so many recent French-mothering discussions recently -- e.g. Jennifer Szalai on Mother Natures: On Elisabeth Badinter in The Nation. As if Irène Némirovsky hadn't offered enough examples, here is yet another book suggesting French moms -- three generations' worth, here -- are far from having it all together .....)

(Posted by: M.A.Orthofer)    - permanent link -



7 June 2012 - Thursday

Prince of Asturias Award for Literature | Ray Bradbury (1920-2012)
'Publishing the World' | The Day before Happiness review

       Prince of Asturias Award for Literature

       They've announced that the 2012 Prince of Asturias Award for Literature has gone to Philip Roth -- selected from 24 nominations from 19 different countries. (Tantalizingly, they don't reveal the actual nominations, but do reveal what countries they are from: Australia, Brazil, Canada, Colombia, Cuba, China, France, Guatemala, Holland, Ireland, Japan, Macedonia, Portugal, Rumania, Senegal, South Africa, Turkey, United States and Spain .....)
       There are a variety of 'Prince of Asturias Awards': the one for International Cooperation will be announced next week, the ones for 'Sport' and 'Concord' only in September.
       And don't forget that last year the literature-winner was ... Leonard Cohen.

(Posted by: M.A.Orthofer)    - permanent link -



       Ray Bradbury (1920-2012)

       As widely reported, Ray Bradbury has passed away; see, for example, his official site -- though there are no end of tributes and reports to be found pretty much everywhere.
       None of his books are under review at the complete review, but I expect I met eventually get to some at some point.

(Posted by: M.A.Orthofer)    - permanent link -



       'Publishing the World'

       At Publishing Perspectives Brittany Hazelwood and Samantha Steele report on how Publishing the World Targets Foreign Literature and its Young Lovers -- introducing; 'A young editor's essential tool kit for foreign acquisitions', Publishing the World.
       Sounds like a great idea.

(Posted by: M.A.Orthofer)    - permanent link -



       The Day before Happiness review

       The most recent addition to the complete review is my review of Erri De Luca's The Day before Happiness.
       This is an odd title -- aspects of it really impress, but others ... well, let me just point out that this book contains what is the worst sentence I've come across in a novel in a very, very long time:
My sex was a block of wood glued to her womb.
       Yes, an ... uneven work .....

(Posted by: M.A.Orthofer)    - permanent link -



6 June 2012 - Wednesday

New edition of The Forty Days of Musa Dagh | Book-discounting in ... Israel
Andrukhovych on Euro 2012

       New edition of The Forty Days of Musa Dagh

       At Tablet Liel Leibovitz praises The Best Holocaust Novel Ever, Franz Werfel's The Forty Days of Musa Dagh.
       This is out in a new edition from Godine, who explain on their publicity page that:
The original English translation by Geoffrey Dunlop has been revised and expanded by translator James Reidel and scholar Violet Lutz. The Dunlop translation, had excised approximately 25% of the original two-volume text to accommodate the Book-of-the-Month club and to streamline the novel for film adaptation.
       Hey, it only took ... 78 years until the full translation could be published ..... (The Dunlop translation first appeared in 1934.) (But: great that Godine has managed to do it.)

       Leibovitz suggests that:
Read in chronological order, Franz Werfel's work leads through all the dreams and nightmares that Europe had withstood in the first half of the 20th century.
       And about The Forty Days of Musa Dagh in particular:
Werfel's narration is weighted down by his predilection for bombastic turns of phrase, but he impressively soars and dips in and out of numerous characters' consciousness, narrating the unfolding events from various points of view. And just as some bit of symbolism begins to feel too cumbersome, he delivers stunning passages about cruelty, compassion, and the strange logic of extermination attempted on a very large scale.
       Get your copy at Amazon.com or Amazon.co.uk.

(Posted by: M.A.Orthofer)    - permanent link -



       Book-discounting in ... Israel

       Maya Sela reports in Haaretz that: 'Ten top Israeli authors tell their publishers they don't want their books sold at discount prices at the 51st Hebrew Book Week, describing low prices as 'humiliation'', in David Grossman and Amos Oz don't want to be a bargain, as:
The writers are demanding that their publishing houses not allow their books to be included in the big sales, because they say, "We can no longer participate in the humiliation of our works in particular, and Hebrew literature in general."

Those who spoke out against the sales are David Grossman, Haim Be'er, Ronit Matalon, Amos Oz, Eli Amir, Yoram Kaniuk, Orly Castel-Bloom, Judith Katzir, Meir Shalev and Zeruya Shalev.
       An impressive list of writers.

(Posted by: M.A.Orthofer)    - permanent link -



       Andrukhovych on Euro 2012

       Euro 2012 -- the European football (soccer) championships -- are being co-hosted by Ukraine and Poland this year, and start on Friday. At the Slovakian Salon Yuri Andrukhovych -- or Jurij Andruchovyč, as they transliterate the name here -- promises: We'll treat you to a Euro to remember ! [via] -- more threat than promise:
Oh, you naive Europeans ! You still think that during talks with Ukrainian leaders you are really talking to politicians ? Some politicians -- these are common criminals !
       After tune-up losses in the last week to non-qualifier Austria (2:3) and now Turkey (0:2) the national team looks to flop out of the competition quickly, so at least the local politicians crooks likely not to be able to make much nationalist hay here; nevertheless .....

       (Several Andrukhovych titles are under review at the complete review; see, for example, Recreations.)

(Posted by: M.A.Orthofer)    - permanent link -



5 June 2012 - Tuesday

2012 translations into English: Arabic, Japanese literature
Un-censoring Burmese fiction | Laurent Binet profile
Traveler of the Century review-overview

       2012 translations into English: Arabic, Japanese literature

       Great resources from some specialized weblogs:

        - At Arabic Literature (in English) there's the useful A Look at What's New in 2012: Arab and Arabic Literature (in English)

        - At Junbungaku there's The List -- "an index of all pieces of Japanese literature coming out in English for the year 2012" (which is frequently updated, as new information becomes available)

       Three Percent's Translation Database remains, of course, the great American resource (the above two look more generally at everything translated into English -- which, given the remaining astonishing differences between the US and UK markets in what gets translated and published, is very useful -- but often means that, if you're in the US, you're more or less out of luck ...) for all (new) fiction and poetry translations, but, alas, there's no 2012 edition up yet .....

(Posted by: M.A.Orthofer)    - permanent link -



       Un-censoring Burmese fiction

       In The Myanmar Times Zon Pann Pwint finds folks are finally Shining light on censored fiction.
       Until now:
For the past 50 years, literature lovers in Myanmar have been able to read only the bowdlerised versions of the short stories, novels and poems published by local writers, with much of the best material left on the cutting room floor as a result of the relentless assault of the censor's red pen.
       But apparently there's change in the air even here.
       Meanwhile, author U Min Khite Soe San reports:
"The censors have long regarded our art with suspicion," he said. "We honestly share what we know with our readers, but the censors have removed parts of novels unnecessarily with doubts beyond their duties, so that our artistic flesh is sliced away.

(Posted by: M.A.Orthofer)    - permanent link -



       Laurent Binet profile

       In The Telegraph "Jasper Rees talks to Laurent Binet about his playful new novel about an assasination attempt, HHhH."
       Rees notes about the book:
It all sounds highly French, and in other hands the novelís squeamish contortions might easily pall. But the book has been invaded by the playful, inquiring spirit of Kundera and incongruously contrives to be a delightful entertainment. Many French and Czech readers have certainly found so. The only readership which has not warmed to HHhH is in Germany. "Maybe you can believe that they are fed up that everyone talks about the Nazis," says Binet, "but I don't believe it."
       (I can imagine several other reasons why they didn't take to it, too .....)
       But what really caught my eye in this piece was the parenthetical note that:
Although he includes his Slovak girlfriend, he doesnít relate why he left Slovakia early: "My girlfriend was a married woman with somebody quite powerful there so there was a little scandal and the embassy decided to recall me for security reasons."
       Now that's something I would have loved to hear more about in HHhH -- a (possibly) interesting story whose details he might actually be able to offer some real insight into (as opposed to the admittedly also interesting but beaten beyond death over-familiar Heydrich story, which he offers almost nothing interesting, new, or insightful about).
       (I do have to admit that this also makes me think even less of Binet's book: admittedly, it's understandable that he'd want to censor the fact that he's the kind of shit who would have an affair with a married woman (and faced the ignominy of being recalled by his embassy), but this silence on such a significant part of the story suggests the novel as a whole is shaped even more entirely to the (very subjective) image he wants to present -- of himself, of those involved in the attempt of Heydrich's life, of Heydrich himself, etc. -- than I had previously thought (and which had already bothered me a great deal).)

(Posted by: M.A.Orthofer)    - permanent link -



       Traveler of the Century review-overview

       The most recent addition to the complete review is a review-overview of Andrés Neuman's Traveler of the Century (or, as it's called in the UK, Traveller of the Century).
       Prize-winning, much-praised -- I wonder if I just had way too high expectations for this one ..... Whatever the case, I really didn't take to it; I'll probably have another look eventually.

(Posted by: M.A.Orthofer)    - permanent link -



4 June 2012 - Monday

Interviews at The Oxonian Review | Summer 2012 Quarterly Conversation
Publishing in ... Israel | The Pilgrim review

       Interviews at The Oxonian Review

       At The Oxonian Review Alexander Barker and Alex Niven have An Interview with Terry Eagleton -- who notes, among other things: "It's not a good time to be in the universities."
       He also mentions:
I've got a book coming out called something banal like How To Study Literature because I fear that literary criticism, at least as I knew it and was taught it, is almost as dead on its feet as clog dancing.
       That book is presumably -- less banally titled ? -- The Event of Literature, now out from Yale University Press; get your copy at Amazon.com or Amazon.co.uk.

       Also at The Oxonian Review, Scarlett Baron has a lengthy Interview with Alan Hollinghurst.

(Posted by: M.A.Orthofer)    - permanent link -



       Summer 2012 Quarterly Conversation

       The Summer 2012 issue of the Quarterly Conversation is up, with lots of articles, interviews, and reviews -- lots of books and authors of interest under discussion.

(Posted by: M.A.Orthofer)    - permanent link -



       Publishing in ... Israel

       In Haaretz Maya Sela reports that now Top publisher stops accepting new writers as protest against bookselling duopoly, as:
The New Library literary imprint has announced that it has stopped accepting book manuscripts from new writers, as a protest against what it terms the intolerable situation of the local book market.
       (See the announcement here.)
       Certainly, some are convinced the situation does not look great:
The imprint's literary editor, Prof. Menachem Perry, has been in the industry for more than 40 years and has much to say about the current state of the market.

"For five years I've been raising the alarm about the imminent national disaster, and all of the darkest prophecies are being realized," Perry says. "We're in the final moments."

Perry says that over the next two years all of Israel's literary publishers will collapse, like dominoes.

(Posted by: M.A.Orthofer)    - permanent link -



       The Pilgrim review

       The most recent addition to the complete review is my review of Iwan Simatupang's The Pilgrim, recently reissued in Lontar's admirable Modern Library of Indonesia-series.

(Posted by: M.A.Orthofer)    - permanent link -



3 June 2012 - Sunday

Martin Amis profile | Mario Vargas Llosa Q & A
Azerbaijani Museum of Literature plans

       Martin Amis profile

       The Lionel Asbo-publicity machine gathers steam with the next looooong profile of Martin Amis, as Tom Lamont reports on Martin Amis: a new chapter in America in The Observer.
       (I am looking forward to Lionel Asbo -- though I worry that I will quickly tire of looking forward to it if I continue to come across many more such profiles (especially once the Americans jump on the American angle ... though I suppose that there's some hope that American publications won't think him worth their while, much less so much space; I keep my fingers crossed); get your copy at Amazon.co.uk, or, in the US, where it's due out in August, pre-order your copy at Amazon.com).)

(Posted by: M.A.Orthofer)    - permanent link -



       Mario Vargas Llosa Q & A

       PBS Newshour has a segment (plus transcript) of Peruvian Writer Mario Vargas Llosa on the Importance of Literature by Jeffrey Brown, as the publicity-machine for his Roger Casement-novel, The Dream of the Celt, comes stateside, too.
       I'm not sure about this one, but since I've covered so much else by him I figure I'll get to it eventually; see also the publicity pages from Farrar, Straus and Giroux and Faber, or get your copy at Amazon.com or Amazon.co.uk (and compare the two different covers ...).

(Posted by: M.A.Orthofer)    - permanent link -



       Azerbaijani Museum of Literature plans

       ABC.az reports that Azerbaijan's head allocated AZN 5 million for construction of Museum of Literature in Gazakh.
       Seems kind of an out-of-the-way place for a museum, but better than nothing; on the other hand 5,000,000 AZN (or New Manats, as the currency is apparently called) is a decent sum: while the currency is so obscure the currency symbol doesn't even have its own unicode, it is worth more per unit than the US dollar, and so that adds up to more than $6,350,000.
       Apparently:
The Order is motivated by the importance of identifying the potential of young creative generation, preservation and promotion of national directions of literature and literary and cultural heritage of the people, and relevant request made on the occasion by writers and poets of the region.
       Sounds admirable enough (though of course what becomes of all this remains to be seen ...).

(Posted by: M.A.Orthofer)    - permanent link -



2 June 2012 - Saturday

June issues | Digitized review

       June issues

       Among June issues of online periodicals now available:

        - Open Letters Monthly -- which includes the always interesting look at other reviews, in this case John Cotter looking at the review-reactions to Toni Morrison's Home

        - the Words without Borders Queer Issue III -- which also includes some poetry from Myanmar

        - and see also the selected highlights from the June 2012 issue of the Literary Review -- which includes John Sutherland's review of Leah Price's How to Do Things with Books in Victorian Britain (I have a copy of this, and am looking forward to covering it; see also the Princeton University Press publicity page, or get your copy at Amazon.com or Amazon.co.uk)

(Posted by: M.A.Orthofer)    - permanent link -



       Digitized review

       The most recent addition to the complete review is my review of Peter J. Bentley's book on The Science of Computers and How It Shapes Our World, Digitized.

(Posted by: M.A.Orthofer)    - permanent link -



1 June 2012 - Friday

The Nation on Amazon.com | Read Russia 2012
Science Fiction & Fantasy Translation Awards finalists

       The Nation on Amazon.com

       The new issue of The Nation has three articles on Amazon.com:

        • Michael Naumann explains How Germany Keeps Amazon at Bay and Literary Culture Alive -- noting that:
In Germany, approximately 90,000 new books are published each year, which per capita is about four times as many as in the United States. Among the new books of 2010 were 11,349 translations, including 6,993 English-language titles. Additionally, average book prices in Germany are the lowest in Europe, with the possible exception of Iceland and Finland. This ignominious "cartel" seems to be working to the advantage of readers, publishers, bookstores and authors, especially those who cannot expect total sales of more than 3,000 copies.
       It's interesting to learn that, however:
One outcome of the fixed-price law has been the growth of a new online market for used books: approximately 100,000 titles are now available. The flourishing of this market is a clear indication that the backlist business of German publishing has declined dramatically since the passage of the fixed-price law. Whereas in the 1980s the backlist accounted for nearly 30 percent of the sales for hardcover books, today that share has fallen to 5 percent.
        • Steve Wasserman on The Amazon Effect, a fine overview of how Amazon has changed over the years and some of the dangers it might pose.
       Lots of good stuff here -- though I'm not sure I'd go as far as he does in claiming:
But as Amazonís six other publishing imprints (Montlake Romance, AmazonCrossing, Thomas & Mercer, 47North, Amazon Encore, The Domino Project) have discovered, in certain genres (romance, science fiction and fantasy) formerly relegated to the moribund mass-market paperback, readers care not a whit about cover design or even good writing, and have no attachment at all to the book as object. Like addicts, they just want their fix at the lowest possible price, and Amazon is happy to be their online dealer.
       Not sure he put this the best way either:
More worrisome, at least over the long term, is the success of Amazonís Kindle Single program, an effort to encourage writers to make an end run around publishers, not only of books but of magazines as well. [...] Royalties are direct-deposited monthly, and authors can check their sales anytime -- a level of efficiency and transparency almost unknown at traditional publishers and magazines.
       I, for one, think 'traditional' publishers could do with a good (indeed, massive -- or, indeed, any) dose of efficiency and transparency, and at least in these areas surely the Amazon-nudge is only to be welcomed (except, of course, by the publishers, who prefer to do things the old, old, old-fashioned way).

        • Anthony Grafton complains that Search Gets Lost -- a modestly interesting case study.

(Posted by: M.A.Orthofer)    - permanent link -



       Read Russia 2012

       The Russians are trying hard to make a case for their fiction in the US, and Read Russia 2012, which runs 2 to 7 June in New York (overlapping with BookExpo America, but also including many events separate from it), certainly looks like a great way to learn about it.
       With only 18 (not previously translated) titles of fiction and poetry published in the US in 2011 (according to the Translation Database at Three Percent) there's certainly room for a lot more to be made available -- and Read Russia offers many promising-sounding events, covering many facets of contemporary Russian literature, so maybe this will help get some more translations commissioned.

       (Obviously, there's a lot of work to be done: I've reviewed three originally-written-in-Russian titles at the complete review so far in 2012 -- but none really qualifies as a very new work: yes, Sigizmund Krzhizhanovsky's The Letter Killers Club is new-in-English but dates from the 1920s; Andrey Kurkov's The Case of the General's Thumb is new-to-the-US, but this translation was published in the UK in 2003; and the Strugatsky's Roadside Picnic is a 2012 translation -- but of a 1972 work previously translated into and published in English in 1977. Not exactly cutting edge stuff.)

(Posted by: M.A.Orthofer)    - permanent link -



       Science Fiction & Fantasy Translation Awards finalists

       I'm reminded by Arabic Literature (in English)'s mention that they've announced the finalists for the 2012 Science Fiction & Fantasy Translation Awards -- and two of the 'long form' finalists are under review at the complete review: Utopia by Ahmed Khaled Towfik and Zero and Other Fictions by Huang Fan. (I haven't seen the others, sigh.)
       The winners will be announced 21 or 22 July.

(Posted by: M.A.Orthofer)    - permanent link -



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