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14 November 2018 - Wednesday

Warwick Prize for Women in Translation | Newcomer review

       Warwick Prize for Women in Translation

       They've announced the winner of this year's Warwick Prize for Women in Translation -- and it is Belladonna, by Daša Drndić, translated by Celia Hawkesworth.
       Certainly a worthy winner.

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



       Newcomer review

       The most recent addition to the complete review is my review of Higashino Keigo's Newcomer, just out in English.

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



13 November 2018 - Tuesday

FT and McKinsey Business Book of the Year | Grand prix de littérature américaine
Kirkus' Best Fiction in Translation - 2018 | Charles Bovary, Country Doctor review

       FT and McKinsey Business Book of the Year

       They've announced that Bad Blood, by John Carreyrou -- the story of the Theranos-scam/fiasco --, has been named this year's Financial Times and McKinsey Business Book of the Year.
       See the Knopf publicity page, or get your copy at Amazon.com or Amazon.co.uk.

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



       Grand prix de littérature américaine

       The (American) National Book Foundation will announce the winners of this year's National Book Awards tomorrow -- but the French have their own ideas, and they've now announced that The Overstory, by Richard Powers, has won this year's Grand prix de littérature américaine; see, for example, the Livres Hebdo report.

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



       Kirkus' Best Fiction in Translation - 2018

       Kirkus has announced its Best Fiction of 2018 lists in quite a few categories -- including: Best Up-To-The-Minute Fiction, as well as Best Fiction in Translation.
       Several of these 'Best Translations' are already under review at the complete review:        And I should be getting to more -- certainly the Barba, and the Higashino (later today, as a matter of fact ...).
       A somewhat odd choice is the re-issue of Kono Taeko's Toddler Hunting, since ... well, it's a re-issue; Kirkus even reviewed it back in 1996 (and then again this year).

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



       Charles Bovary, Country Doctor review

       The most recent addition to the complete review is my review of Jean Améry's Portrait of a Simple Man, Charles Bovary, Country Doctor -- an alternate-Bovary, combining both fiction and essay, recently out in English from New York Review Books.

       Améry isn't the first to focus on his side of the story -- recall the Monsieur Bovarys by Laura Grimaldi (1991) and Antoine Billot (2006) -- but the variation I really want to see now is Claro's Madman Bovary; see, for examples, the publicity pages at Gallimard and Actes Sud.
       (Claro's Electric Flesh has been translated into English, but I'm surprised more hasn't been.)

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



12 November 2018 - Monday

Swiss Book Prize | Translation is ... hot ? | Blue Label review

       Swiss Book Prize

       They've announced that Die sanfte Gleichgültigkeit der Welt, by Peter Stamm, has won this year's (German-language) Swiss Book Prize.
       This isn't available in English yet (see the S.Fischer publicity page for now), but most of Stamm's work has been/gets translated (Agnes, etc.), so this probably will be soon too.

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       Translation is ... hot ?

       This year the (American) National Book Foundation added (back) a translation category to their National Book Awards (which will be announced this week), and at The Atlantic Liesl Schillinger takes the occasion to suggest The Hottest Trend in American Literature Isn't From the U.S..
       There certainly has been a resurgence of interest in literature in translation, but Schillinger doesn't note the previous waning (until ca. 2000) before the current waxing -- which included the National Book Awards previously having a translation category, discontinued in 1984. And for all the Knausgaard-Ferrante excitement, aren't there books like this -- more or less 'serious' literature that sells well and/or gets a lot of coverage -- every decade or so ? Ten-twelve years ago the craze was all Bolaño, in the late-1990s Sebald, in the mid-80's it was The Name of the Rose.

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



       Blue Label review

       The most recent addition to the complete review is my review of Venezuelan author Eduardo Sánchez Rugeles' Blue Label.

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



11 November 2018 - Sunday

'Difficult' books | Library of Bangladesh

       'Difficult' books

       In The Guardian Sam Leith writes at some length on Pretentious, impenetrable, hard work ... better ? Why we need difficult books -- a sensible overview of the subject of 'difficult' books.

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



       Library of Bangladesh

       Reporting from the Dhaka Lit Fest Qazi Mustabeen Noor writes about the Library of Bangladesh: Taking translation to the world.
       The Dhaka Translation Center-based initiative: "has brought some much-needed order and cohesion that Bangla to English translation has for so long demanded".
       Several books have already been published by Bengal Lights Books: see their publicity pages for Two Novellas by Syed Shamsul Haq (which is also published by Seagull Books (as Blue Venom. Forbidden Incense)), Beloved Rongomala by Shaheen Akhtar, and Selected Poems by Shaheed Quaderi.

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



10 November 2018 - Saturday

National Museum of Korean Literature | Roy Jacobsen Q & A
I am a Cat review

       National Museum of Korean Literature

       The South Korea Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism has announced a site (in Gijachon, in northwestern Seoul) and funding for a planned National Museum of Korean Literature, due to open in 2022; see also the Yonhap report, Gov't to build Korean literature museum in Seoul's northwestern district.
       They promise:
We'll do our best to make the museum into a major hub for promoting literature.
       Sounds good.

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



       Roy Jacobsen Q & A

       At hlo Gergő Melhardt has a Q & A with Roy Jacobsen: Nostalgia's a scar that's good to scratch from when he was at the recent Margó Irodalmi Fesztivál -- mainly about The Unseen.

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



       I am a Cat review

       The most recent addition to the complete review is my review of Natsume Sōseki's classic, I am a Cat.

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



9 November 2018 - Friday

The Plot Against America - the mini-series | Adam Kirsch on Giorgio Bassani
Prix du Premier roman

       The Plot Against America - the mini-series

       About two weeks ago I mentioned the 92nd Street Y's staged reading of Philip Roth's The Plot Against America (and see now also Paige Williams' report on that, Reading Philip Roth After the Pittsburgh Massacre, at The New Yorker) -- and now they've announced that the novel will also be turned into a six-hour mini-series as, as for example Lesley Goldberg reports in The Hollywood Reporter, David Simon Fascism Drama 'The Plot Against America' a Go at HBO.
       There's certainly some potential here; it'll be interesting to see the results.

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



       Adam Kirsch on Giorgio Bassani

       The Novel of Ferrara, collecting Jamie McKendrick's translations of Giorgio Bassani that have been appearing over the past few years, has just come out, and at Tablet Adam Kirsch offers an overview, in Giorgio Bassani's Memorial Tapestry -- noting that: "[The Garden of the Finzi-Continis] gains in meaning and resonance as part of The Novel of Ferrara, where it forms one panel in a tapestry representing the lost world of Ferrara’s Jewry".
       I have a copy and should be getting to it -- though probably piecemeal; meanwhile, see the publicity pages from W.W.Norton and Penguin Classics, or get your copy at Amazon.com or Amazon.co.uk.

       (Updated - 10 November): See now also Fernanda Eberstadt's review in The New York Times Book Review.

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



       Prix du Premier roman

       French prize season putters on even after the announcement of the Goncourt and the Renaudot-winners -- with, for example, the prix Interallié only announcing its finalists yesterday (the winner to be revealed next week); see, for example, the Livres Hebdo report.
       Among the other prizes that named winners after the Goncourt-Renaudot: the first-novel prize the prix du Premier roman -- with awards for both a domestic work (Concours pour le Paradis, by Clélia Renucci) and a foreign one (The Sum of Our Follies, by Shih-Li Kow); see the Livres Hebdo report.

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



8 November 2018 - Thursday

French literary prizes | South African Literary Awards
Christopher Lehmann-Haupt (1934-2018) | Childhood review

       French literary prizes

       They announced the winners of the two leading French book prizes yesterday.
       The prix Goncourt went to Leurs enfants après eux, by Nicolas Mathieu. The 2 Seas foreign rights page notes that US rights have gone to Other Press; see also the Actes Sud publicity page.
       The prix Renaudot went to Le Sillon, by Valérie Manteau; see the Le Tripode publicity page.

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



       South African Literary Awards

       They've announced the winners of this year's South African Literary Awards; Dan Sleigh's 1795 won for best novel; see the Tafelberg publicity page.

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



       Christopher Lehmann-Haupt (1934-2018)

       Longtime book-reviewer for The New York Times Christopher Lehmann-Haupt has passed away; see, for example, Robert D. McFadden's obituary in The New York Times.

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



       Childhood review

       The most recent addition to the complete review is my review of Two Novellas by Gerard Reve, Childhood, just out from Pushkin Press.
       These have actually both been translated before, but were previously only available in anthologies; it's good to see them in dedicated-book form -- but there's still a lot of Reve to get into English .....

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



7 November 2018 - Wednesday

Warwick Prize for Women in Translation shortlist | Prix Médicis
Kamala Markandaya | The Anarchist Who Shared My Name review

       Warwick Prize for Women in Translation shortlist

       They've announced the shortlist for the Warwick Prize for Women in Translation.
       The only title under review at the complete review is Daša Drndić's Belladonna, but I should be getting to some more of these.
       The winner will be announced next Tuesday, 13 November.

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



       Prix Médicis

       Next up among the French literary prizes: the three-category prix Médicis; see, for example, the Livres Hebdo report.
       The fiction prize went to Idiotie by Pierre Guyotat (see the Grasset publicity page); several of his previous works have been translated into English; see, for example, the author page at MIT Press.
       The foreign novel prize went to Rachel Kushner's The Mars Room, and the non-fiction-prize to Stefano Massini's The Lehman Trilogy.

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



       Kamala Markandaya

       At The Paris Review's The Daily weblog Emma Garman writes about Kamala Markandaya in her 'Feminize Your Canon'-series.

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



       The Anarchist Who Shared My Name review

       The most recent addition to the complete review is my review of Pablo Martín Sánchez's The Anarchist Who Shared My Name, recently out from Deep Vellum.
       Martín Sánchez is a member of the Oulipo, but this isn't too constrained or tricksy a novel.

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



6 November 2018 - Tuesday

Prix Femina | Russian women writers
Literature in ... Turkey | Nana review

       Prix Femina

       French literary prize week began yesterday with the announcement of the prix Femina winners; see also the Livres Hebdo report.
       Le lambeau by Philippe Lançon won the fiction prize; see the Gallimard publicity page. The Ninth Hour by Alice McDermott won for best foreign fiction, and Gaspard de la nuit by Elisabeth de Fontenay won the essay-prize.

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



       Russian women writers

       In The Moscow Times Michele A. Berdy suggests The Women's Century: Five Russian Writers to Watch.
       English-writing Sana Krasikov is probably the most familiar in the US/UK, while Guzel Yakhina's Zuleikha is due out next year from Oneworld (see their publicity page); I hope we get to see more from the others in English.

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



       Literature in ... Turkey

       In Hürriyet Barçin Yi̇nanç has a Q & A with the 'Writer of Honor' of the upcoming International Istanbul Book Fair, Selim İleri, in Readership in Turkey remains low ‘due to flawed approach in education’.

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



       Nana review

       The most recent addition to the complete review is my review of Delacorta's Nana.
       This is the first in a six-book series -- all of which were translated into English -- but it's the second which is the best-known: Diva, the basis for the famous movie. Though they all seem long out of print currently .....

       (Delacorta is, of course, a pseudonym -- of Swiss author Daniel Odier; the only other of his titles under review at the complete review is ... his interview with William Burroughs, The Job.

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



5 November 2018 - Monday

Translating from ... Tamil | Murakami donates literary archive
In/Half review

       Translating from ... Tamil

       In the 'Meet The Translator'-series at Scroll.in Urvashi Bahuguna has a Q & A, Only a fraction of worthy modern Tamil books have been translated, says N Kalyan Raman -- the translator of the JCB Prize for Literature by Perumal Murugan, Poonachi.
       He notes:
Right now the selection of books for translation is guided by good intentions on the part of all concerned -- publishers, editors and translators -- but it is also haphazard to the extent that there is no invisible hand behind this process to ensure that the best works in a particular language are translated on priority. Even among contemporary writers, some are pushed forward through contacts with publishers and others, equally meritorious, are ignored. [...]

There is another flaw in the current process which needs conscious correction. Selection of texts for translation is highly skewed in favour of well-known books by famous authors, in other words, modern classics published at least a few decades earlier.

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



       Murakami donates literary archive

       As The Japan Times reports, Haruki Murakami to donate novel manuscripts, other material to Waseda University, his alma mater.
       Apparently:
The materials include copies of his books translated and published in other countries as well as his extensive collection of music records.
       (And that's a lot: "his collection of vinyl records [...] total more than 10,000 copies".)
       He could have sold his archive for a tidy sum -- and: "he considered some other places, including foreign universities he has worked at".

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



       In/Half review

       The most recent addition to the complete review is my review of Slovenian author Jasmin B. Frelih's In/Half, just out in English from Oneworld.

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



4 November 2018 - Sunday

Q & As: Benyamin - Indrek Hargla | More on Louis Cha

       Q & A: Benyamin

       In The Hindu Jinoy Jose P. is In conversation with Benyamin, the winner of the JCB Prize

       His Jasmine Days won the JCB Prize for Literature; see also my review of his Goat Days.

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



       Q & A: Indrek Hargla

       At estonian world Edith Soosaar has a Q & A with Estonian author Indrek Hargla about reading, writing and publishing.
       He finds:
Realism and writing about yourself and every-day life are the main paradigm of Estonian literature. Those who dare to venture away from that mainstream do not write well yet.
       Peter Owen has published two of his Apothecary Melchior-novels; see their publicity page.

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



       More on Louis Cha

       As I mentioned last week, Louis Cha (Jin Yong) has passed away. Among the interesting articles about him and his writing since then, see:
(Posted by: M.A.Orthofer)    - permanent link -



3 November 2018 - Saturday

Russian books auction | The most influential book of the past 20 years ?
The Frolic of the Beasts review

       Russian books auction

       On 28 November Christie's (London) is holding an auction of Russian Literary First Editions & Manuscripts: Highlights from the R. Eden Martin Collection -- 228 lots.
       The preview article highlights some of the most impressive of the lots; check out: From a rare first edition of Dostoevsky's masterpiece to the CIA-sponsored Doctor Zhivago. (The article says the auction is: "in New York on 28 November", but everywhere else says London -- for the viewings, too -- so .....)

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



       The most influential book of the past 20 years ?

       In the Chronicle of Higher Education they asked "scholars from across the academy": 'What's the most influential book of the past 20 years ?', and their responses can be found in The New Canon.
       Close to all the titles are non-fiction -- and none are under review at the complete review.

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



       The Frolic of the Beasts review

       The most recent addition to the complete review is my review of Mishima Yukio's The Frolic of the Beasts.

       Mishima was a prolific author and far too much of his work hasn't been translated into English yet (really, a lot), so it's always great to see something new -- and great that there's a bit more coming next spring, with Star; see the publicity pages from New Directions and Penguin Classics or pre-order your copy at Amazon.com or Amazon.co.uk.

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



2 November 2018 - Friday

(American) National Translation Awards | Sudan/South Sudan Literature Week

       (American) National Translation Awards

       The American Literary Translators Association has announced the winners of the 2018 National Translation Awards.
       Charlotte Mandell's translation of Mathias Énard's Compass won the prose category.
       Katrine Øgaard Jensen's translation of Ursula Andkjær Olsen's Third-Millennium Heart won the poetry category. (I have this, and will get to it eventually .....)

       They also announced the winners of the Lucien Stryk Asian Translation Prize (Bonnie Huie's translation of Qiu Miaojin's Notes of a Crocodile), the Italian Prose in Translation Award (Elizabeth Harris' translation of Antonio Tabucchi's For Isabel), and the Cliff Becker Book Prize in Translation.

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



       Sudan/South Sudan Literature Week

       The Sudan/South Sudan Literature Week started yesterday at P21Gallery -- and actually lasts ten days.
       Great to see some exposure for yet another country (well, two) from which we see far too little.

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



1 November 2018 - Thursday

Governor General's Literary Awards | Cundill History Prize finalists
Translation from ... German to Arabic | Treatise on Modern Stimulants review

       Governor General's Literary Awards

       They've announced the winners of the (Canadian) Governor General's Literary Awards -- seven winners each in English and French, with The Red Word by Sarah Henstra and De synthèse by Karoline Georges the fiction winners, and translations of Barney's Version by Mordecai Richler and Explication de la nuit by Edem Awumey the translation winners.

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



       Cundill History Prize finalists

       They've announced the three finalists for the Cundill History Prize -- at US$75,000, apparently: "the largest prize for a work of non-fiction in English".
       The winner will be announced 15 November.

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



       Translation from ... German to Arabic

       At Qantara.de they have a Q & A with literary translator Nabil Al Haffar, who translates from the German to Arabic -- and an impressive range of authors and titles, from Peter Weiss to Christoph Ransmayr's Cox; currently he's working on Kafka.

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



       Treatise on Modern Stimulants review

       The most recent addition to the complete review is my review of Honoré de Balzac's Treatise on Modern Stimulants, just out in a nice little edition from Wakefield Press.

       A fine complement to Stanisław Ignacy Witkiewicz's Narcotics, which Twisted Spoon Press brought out earlier this year .....

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



31 October 2018 - Wednesday

Nordic Council Literature Prize | Louis Cha/Jin Yong (1924-2018)
Prix Goncourt finalists | Chad Post Q & A | The Enemy review

       Nordic Council Literature Prize

       They've announced that the 2018 Nordic Council Literature Prize goes to Hotel Silence, by Auður Ava Ólafsdóttir.

       That's the ninth Nordic Council Literature Prize-winner under review at the complete review -- more than I have fiction-winners of the National Book Critics Circle Award, (American) National Book Award, and Pulitzer Prize combined .....

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



       Louis Cha/Jin Yong (1924-2018)

       Bestselling Chinese author Louis Cha/Jin Yong has passed away; see, for example Foong Woei Wan's Obituary: Jin Yong fused martial arts fantasy, history and romance into must-read novels in The Straits Times.
       He was important enough to rate a mention in my The Complete Review Guide to Contemporary World Fiction, though not enough of his work is available in English. MacLehose Press did bring out a translation of volume one of his Legends of the Condor Heroes-series earlier this year, A Hero Born -- see their publicity page, or get your copy at Amazon.com or Amazon.co.uk -- but of course the set to get is Oxford University Press' The Deer and the Cauldron; see their publicity page, or get your copy at Amazon.com or Amazon.co.uk.

       (Updated - 1 November): See now also Jin Yong: The 'Tolkien of Chinese literature' dies at 94 at the BBC.

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



       Prix Goncourt finalists

       They've announced the four finalists for the Prix Goncourt, the biggest of the French book prizes; see, for example, the Livres Hebdo report.
       The winner will be announced 7 November.

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



       Chad Post Q & A

       Open Letter's Chad Post picked up the Words Without Borders Ottaway Award for the Promotion of International Literature yesterday, and at Publishing Perspectives Porter Anderson has a Q & A with him, Ottaway Winner: Chad Post on Translation's 'Expanding Audience'.
       Chad says:
With so many new presses out there doing translations, and so many more options and ways of reaching different readerships, I think the audience is expanding at a steady clip. It also helps that there are so many new translators, new programs in translation, new journals and sites -- it's an exciting time to be involved in this part of publishing.
       I hope he's right about the audience expanding -- though certainly, as he notes, the offerings are, which is at least something.

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       The Enemy review

       The most recent addition to the complete review is my review of another of Lee Child's Jack Reacher novels, The Enemy -- the best (of the small lot) I've read so far.

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



30 October 2018 - Tuesday

Tamazight support | Daša Drndić profile

       Tamazight support

       Great to see the Berber languages getting some greater attention: Algerian Prime Minister Ahmed Ouyahia has announced that an Académie algérienne de la langue amazighe will be founded by the end of the year, while in Morocco (where apparently a mere two per cent of published books are in Berber) the annual Moroccan Book Prize was awarded in an Amazigh category for the first time (the prize shared by Sa iggura dar illis n tafukt (by Ayad Alahyane) and Askwti n tlkkawt (by Firas Fadmh)); see, for example, La création littéraire amazighe récompensée pour la première fois au Prix du Maroc du Livre.
       Now let's hope some appears in English translation as well .....

       Meanwhile, in the region, the Salon International du Livre d'Alger opened yesterday and runs through 10 November; it features several 'Grandes plumes de Chine' -- including Nobel laureate Mo Yan.

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



       Daša Drndić profile

       In The Calvert Journal Eileen Battersby profiles Daša Drndić: reflecting on the life and literature of Croatia’s most courageous writer -- author of Doppelgänger and Belladonna.

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



29 October 2018 - Monday

Crossword Book Award shortlists | Best Dutch sentence
Translating from ... Kashmiri | Checkpoint review

       Crossword Book Award shortlists

       They've announced the shortlists for another of the big Indian literary awards, the Crossword Book Awards.
       The official site oddly only lists the 'Popular Shortlist' -- where you can vote for the winners in a variety of categories -- but, for example, see the report on the shortlist of the Crossword Book Jury Awards at Scroll.in for the finalists in the four juried categories.
       The translation category includes two translations apiece from Malayalam and Tamil, and one from Assamese.

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



       Best Dutch sentence

       They've announced the winner of the Tzum-prijs 2018, a Dutch prize for the best sentence from a book published in 2017; see, for example, the Dutch Foundation for Literature report, Pieter Waterdrinker wins prize for best sentence.
       The sentence is from his Tsjaikovskistraat 40, which is apparently being published in English by Scribe in 2020; it's one of quite a few from the novel that was nominated (the official site has all the nominated sentences) and is:
Zou deze stad op een andere breedtegraad liggen, in een ander landschap, met een andere stand van de zon, zonder de ellenlange grijze maanden van regen, mist en grauwheid, niet op deze schrale moerasgrond staan, in de bodem waarvan de botten liggen van de ontelbare stakkers die hun leven bij de bouw ervan hebben gelaten, maar op een rots, te midden van fraaie glooiende heuvels, met de zwartinkten silhouetten van olijfbomen en cipressen, dan zou Sint-Petersburg met zijn grande armée van mintgroene, zachtroze, bosbesrode en geel gesausde pleisterwerkgevels Florence met gemak naar de kroon steken.
       The payout isn't great, but it helps that it's a pretty long sentence: beside a trophy, the winner gets a euro for every word in the winning sentence -- 95, in this case.
       See also the previous winning sentences.

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



       Translating from ... Kashmiri

       Looks like a great new series at Scroll.in, 'a series of interviews featuring women translating texts from and into different languages', and the first entry is Niyati Bhat's Q & A, 'You have to be very humble': How Neerja Mattoo translates from Kashmiri to English.
       But:
What do you think about the current state of translation in Kashmir ?
I am not very happy.
       And then there's:
Have you read Ranjit Hoskote's translation of Lal Ded's verses ?
Oh, I have. It is a very beautifully brought out book but I am not happy with the translations. In fact, I met him once at some literary festival and I asked him how is it that he translated without knowing the language.
       So, yes, overall it sounds like there's definitely some work to be done regarding translation-from-Kashmiri.

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



       Checkpoint review

       The most recent addition to the complete review is my review of David Albahari's Checkpoint, recently out in English from Restless Books.

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



28 October 2018 - Sunday

CWA Daggers | Translation from ... Czech to Hebrew

       CWA Daggers

       They've announced (warning ! dreaded pdf format !) the winners of the (UK-based) Crime Writers' Association 2018 CWA Daggers.
       Steve Cavanagh's The Liar -- the third in his Eddie Flynn-series -- took the 'Gold Dagger', while Henning Mankell's After the Fire won the International Dagger (for a translated work).

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



       Translation from ... Czech to Hebrew

       It's always interesting to hear about translation between smaller languages, and at Radio Praha David Vaughan has a Q & A with Pierre Pe'er Friedmann and the Challenges of Bringing Czech Writing to Readers in Israel.
       Pe'er Friedmann admits:
to say that Czech literature is being read in Israel is a bit of an overstatement and to say that it is being translated into Hebrew is an overstatement as well

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



27 October 2018 - Saturday

The Plot Against America reading | Diagram Prize shortlist
Books of the year ... | Виктор Вавич review

       The Plot Against America reading

       In New York, at the 92nd Street Y, they're holding a staged reading of Philip Roth's The Plot Against America, tomorrow, 28 October at 13:00, with quite an impressive cast taking part:
The reading consists of three 90-minute acts with two intermissions. James Shapiro, the renowned Shakespeare scholar, assembled the abridgment. Arin Arbus will direct the reading.
       See also the Library of America report, A-list actors to bring Philip Roth's The Plot Against America to life onstage in New York

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



       Diagram Prize shortlist

       They've announced the shortlist for the Diagram Prize, awarded for "the book world's strangest and most perplexing titles".
       The usual entertaining selection -- though disappointing to see that none are from any of the leading traditional publishers (who are sticking to more boring and unimaginative titles ?).

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



       Books of the year ...

       Sure, it's only October and there are more than two months left in the year but, hey, if there are TV channels that have started their Countdown to Christmas why shouldn't publications start listing their books-of-the-year.
       First up: Publishers Weekly Best Books of 2018.
       Many, many more of these will be appearing in the coming weeks.

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



       Виктор Вавич review

       The most recent addition to the complete review is my review of Boris Zhitkov's Виктор Вавич.
       Zhitkov was best known as an author of children's books -- many of which were translated -- but this epic didn't appear until more than sixty years after his death, in 1999 -- after a failed effort to publish it in 1941 (they printed it and everything, but things didn't work out). Translated into French and German in the early 2000s, it has been widely hailed as one of the most significant early Soviet works. It's heft, however, seems to have scared US/UK publishers off -- no English translation yet.

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



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