Now when I suggest using the hashtag #translationthurs every Thursday to promote books in translation very week did I ever imagine it would find its way on to a book in translation but it has next month Arcadia books are publishing Zenith hotel by Oscar Coop-Phane a prize winning French novella that I feel is one of the best books in the last few years subtle heart wrenching and lifting the lid on a different France .I will be reviewing the book nearer the time but thought I would share the fact a little idea I had four years ago has hit a book cover
22 Feb 2014 14 Comments
01 Jan 2014 10 Comments
Just a quick thought after listening to open book the radio four show about books .Where they had three children’s laureate on talking about the work they had done promoting children’s literature .This set me thinking why isn’t the a translation Laureate ? We talk about not knowing what to read or books getting under promoted now if everyone could get behind one person a well known writer or figure in the lit world and they could advocate the beauty and variety of fiction in translation and do this around the country get a grass roots surge of people really showing interest in literature in translation . What do you think ? Who could do this great task ?
26 Dec 2013 13 Comments
Well unless you’ve been under a rock for last couple of years .you won’t have missed the rise and rise of Stoner a slow climber a writer book it is said ,I enjoyed it but maybe not as much as others the style had the soft spoken style you find in a number of European writers ,this as I start considering a review of stoner , set me thinking of how many stoners are out there either translated and out of print or not even translated ? For me the answer is more than we imagine every year sees a few gems that have been waiting for a publisher to take a dive to translate or a publisher to reissue people like pushkin press , Peirene ,NYRB , Dalkey archive and twisted spoon have in recent years all discover gems Walser ,Zweig , Fallada , Vanderbeke to name a few of many .I’ve been buying and looking at books towards my century of translation project and am amazed what has been translated and fallen out of print .So let’s hope the next stoner is a translation and sets about a wave of rediscovery of lost writers from around the world ?
have you a writer in translation you think should be highlighted ?
16 Sep 2013 15 Comments
Well I’ve been inspired by Simon from stuck in a book who for a second time in 2014 is doing a century of books challenge reading a book from very year of the 20th century well when he announced it herehere .I had a think and decided I would like to try and do the same with books from around the world so I been busy looking around the net and think this will be possible there is a vast amount available as e books if you spend time looking pre 1950 .I’m looking forward to this as it feels like a return to what I did when I started blog before getting on the new book hamster wheel and hat is bringing the best of the world I could find myself to you my readers so in the next two years I’ve given myself two years as I feel some years will be hard to find every year will be the publication year of the book in its original language .so in the next year names like Roberto Arlt,Armando Palacio Valdes ,Horacio Quiroga ,luigi Pirandello ,Henri Barbusse ,Rene Bazin and Osmau Dazai to name a few will be featured as I show how literature around the world developed over the 20th century ,
08 Aug 2013 7 Comments
Last nights edition of the uk arts show Front row had a translation special find it here it on iTunes outside UK .What I was shocked about was the writers reaction to reading translation these were from O do read a few to I pick and chose and then a writer that didn’t read any as he always felt he wasn’t get the full picture . I was rather upset as these are the people that should be promoting fiction in translation .Over last four years my views on translation and its importance in reading them had grown .My admiration of translators and what they do has grown their challenge isn’t just to word for word translate the book no because as one famous translator mr Wynne who was on the show doing a translation slam observed to me he feed a novel through a translation program and what came out was useless .So there work is an art to take what was written and rewrite it as best to be understood by the English reader ok sometimes it doesn’t work but when it does boy it does .I’d missed a joycean influenced vision of Cuba which with put a translation of Joyce to Spanish wouldn’t be written , a German love affair in emails , being an African leader and his down fall ,south American recent dark past and many more events .So to mr Baddiel who said he didn’t I say look what you missed as the English novel is quite boring and predictable at moment I say VIva la translation let them free pick them up read them discover yourself !!!! As robert frost said
I took the road less travelled