They've announced this year's NSW Premier's Literary Awards, a leading Australian literary prize.
Deep Time Dreaming by Billy Griffiths was named book of the year, The Life to Come by Michelle de Kretser won the Christina Stead Prize for Fiction, and the NSW Premier's Translation Prize went to translator-from-the Portuguese Alison Entrekin.
The most recent addition to the complete review is my review of Esther Gerritsen's Craving.
World Editions first published this translation a few years ago, but they recently relaunched more ambitiously, including with this re-issue.
They've announced the six-title shortlist for this year's Women's Prize for Fiction
Only one of the titles is under review at the complete review, Oyinkan Braithwaite's My Sister, the Serial Killer.
The winner will be announced 5 June.
The most recent addition to the complete review is my review of the collection of Selected Poems by Serhiy Zhadan, What We Live For, What We Die For, from Yale University Press in their Margellos World Republic of Letters-series.
The most recent addition to the complete review is my review of Otto Julius Bierbaum's 1908 novella, Samalio Pardulus, now in English in a lovely little Wakefield Press edition -- with 20 (great) Alfred Kubin illustrations.
The Nobel Prize in Literature is announced on a Thursday in October, but we already know that this year it won't be on the first possible Thursday (3 October): eager to get the prize into line after recent troubles, the Nobel Foundation has announced the dates for this year's Nobel Prize announcements, and they've decided the literature prizes (there will be two this year, for 2018 and 2019)) will be announced: "Thursday, October 10, 13.00 at the earliest".
(The 'at the earliest'-caveat applies to all the prizes, in case no decision is reached by the scheduled time.)
This is a change from previous years, when the Swedish Academy decided on the date without direction from the Nobel Foundation; the standard phrasing in the old days was:
According to tradition, the Swedish Academy will set the date for its announcement of the Nobel Prize in Literature later.
But they're now being kept on a much shorter leash .....
Yesterday, they also announced the appointment of a new Permanent Secretary at the Swedish Academy -- the person who runs the Nobel Prize-deciding process, and who announces the winner --, with Mats Malm to succeed interim PS Anders Olsson (who had replaced Sara Danius) on 1 June -- by which time the Nobel Committee should have narrowed down their list(s) of contenders for this year's prizes to a (or two ?) shortlist(s).
Malm is a newbie in the Academy -- hence untainted ? -- who only recently joined, and he is an academic, with a decidedly non-modern focus; certainly very different areas of interest than Sara Danius had .....
It'll be interesting to see whether any of this will have any influence over the decision-making process.
The most recent addition to the complete review is my review of Brazilian author Tony Bellotto's Bellini and the Sphinx -- the first in a series, published in 1995 in Brazil but only now available in English.
They've announced the six-title shortlist for this year's Pushkin House Russian Book Prize, which is for: "the best non-fiction writing in English on the Russian-speaking world"
The winner will be announced 12 June.
In The Unconquerable English Translation at the European Literature Network Czech author Bianca Bellová writes about her successful novel Jezero, which won the Magnesia Litera Book of the Year Award as well as a European Union Prize for Literature and which has been translated into nineteen languages:
both minor -- like Latvian and Albanian -- and major -- like German, French and Spanish; European and non-European, such as Japanese and Arabic.
Some publishers even fought over the rights in an auction.
But sadly, no English.
At Reuters Luiza Ilie reports that Bucharest Open Books Night aims to get Romanians reading -- Noaptea Cărților Deschise.
Some good news -- "Book sales in the country have been rising by 5-10 percent annually in recent years" -- but there's certainly also room for that growth: "A 2018 survey by the country's national culture research institute showed that 69 percent of Romanians had not read a single book over the last year".
They've announced that بريد الليل ('The Night Mail ') by Hoda Barakat has won this year's International Prize for Arabic Fiction, the US$50,000 prize that includes funding to support the translation of the book into English; Oneworld is scheduled to publish it in 2020, as The Night Post.
The New York Public Library's Dorothy and Lewis B. Cullman Center for Scholars and Writers has announced its fifteen 2019-2020 Fellows, selected from 481 applicants from 61 countries.
They include translator Susan Bernofsky, who will be working on a new translation of Thomas Mann's The Magic Mountain, as well as authors Andrés Barba, Sana Krasikov, Ben Marcus, and Sally Rooney.
German author Dieter Forte has passed away; see, for example, the (German) report in Die Zeit.
His first play, Luther, Münzer, and the Bookkeepers of the Reformation, was translated (get your copy at Amazon.com), but he doesn't seem to have made any further inroads into English.
His most recent work, Als der Himmel noch nicht benannt war, came out in February -- and sounds pretty interesting; see the S.Fischer foreign rights page.
George Steiner turned 90 yesterday -- and few writers (and readers) have had as big an influence on me as he has.
I read most of his work before I started the site, but he's continued to be productive, so half a dozen of his works are under review; see, for example, My Unwritten Books or the interview-volume A Long Saturday.
In Die Zeit Durs Grünbein congratulates the master, in Vom Gewicht des Gedichts, while at Tablet they took a ... different approach ? to marking the occasion, with William Kolbrener on ... George Steiner, the Prophet of Progressive Anti-Semitism.
The most recent addition to the complete review is my review of Marcus Du Sautoy's The Creativity Code -- subtitled Art and Innovation in the Age of AI in the US and How AI is learning to write, paint and think in the UK.
This is yet another example of a book published by a (big) commercial publisher in the UK -- Harper Collins (albeit imprint Fourth Estate) -- and a university press in the US (Harvard University Press -- admittedly among the, if not the most 'commercial' of the large American university presses).
They've announced the longlists for the (South African) Sunday Times Literary Awards -- the Barry Ronge Fiction Prize and the Alan Paton Award for non-fiction.
One of the fiction titles is under review at the complete review -- Imraan Coovadia's A Spy in Time.
Chair of the fiction judges Ken Barris did mention:
The judges noted a disappointing cross-section of badly edited work, resulting in repetitive, sometimes disorganised narrative, and overburdened dialogue. We understand that publishers face resource constraints, but felt that this is something requiring more attention.
At Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty Eduard Andryushchenko and Robert Coalson take a look Inside The Soviet KGB's Secret War On Western Books.
They actually pretty much only report on a single 1979 memo, but it's still fun to see what concerned the Soviets -- and what books made it into the country, like The Day Of The Jackal, "a practical handbook for any maniac wishing to carry out a terrorist act".
Interesting also that:
Some of the Western books mentioned in Fedorchuk's memo were not offensive in themselves, but rather because of subversive advertising among their pages.
The most recent addition to the complete review is my review of Enrique Vila-Matas' Mac's Problem -- out from New Directions in the US shortly, and then, as Mac and His Problem, from Harvill Secker in the UK.
The Latvian Ministry of Culture has announced ten translation projects "for publishing literary works of Latvian authors abroad", subsidized to the tune of a total of €24,552.90.
Only one of the translations is into English -- but Nora Ikstena's Soviet Milk, translations of which are being supported into Ukrainian and Croatian, is already available in English.
Somewhat disappointingly, the new Prix Littéraire des campings is apparently not limited to books about camping, but rather more generally for a best holiday read .....
At least they have a dedicated site for the prize -- unusual for a French literary prize -- but they hadn't posted the announcement of the four finalists, last I checked -- but you can find them at ActuaLitté.
The winner will be announced 2 July.