Category Archives: Reading in translation

Frightening and Powerful: ‘Fever Dream’ by Samanta Schweblin

If it wasn’t for the fact that I want this review to sit alongside its fellows on the Man Booker International shortlist, I would be holding off until Halloween.  From witchcraft to pollution, from deserted hospitals to unexpected personality shifts … Continue reading

Posted in Man Booker International Prize 2017, Reading in translation, Samanta Schweblin | Tagged , , | 5 Comments

Never knowing what’s coming next: ‘A Horse Walks into a Bar’ by David Grossman

Grossman’s novel begins enthusiastically and with cringing embarrassment.  ”Good evening!  Good evening!  Good evening to the majestic city of Caesariyaaaaaah!’ … A short, slight, bespectacled man lurches onto the stage from a side door, as if he’d been kicked through … Continue reading

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One way of viewing the world: ‘Compass’ by Mathias Enard

I wonder if in future years, ‘Compass’ will appeal to those in search of obscure book challenges.  The novel is set over one insomniac night; instead of chapters, we are given timings, starting (after a prelude) at 11.10pm and tracking … Continue reading

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Navigating life: ‘Mirror, Shoulder, Signal’ by Dorthe Nors

I’m fairly certain this is the first book I’ve read in which the plot centres around the main character learning to drive.  It makes me wonder if I (and writers everywhere) are missing a trick, because the premise is fantastic.  From … Continue reading

Posted in Dorthe Nors, Nordic literature, Reading in translation | Tagged , , , | 5 Comments

The Man Booker International Prize Shortlist

In 2015, ‘The Vegetarian‘ by Han Kang (translated by Deborah Smith) was one of my top reads of the year.  In 2016, it was rightly awarded the (newly reorganised) Man Booker International Prize.  In honour of those judges getting it … Continue reading

Posted in Book Lists, Man Booker International Prize 2017, Reading in translation | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

‘The Accusation: Forbidden Stories From Inside North Korea’ by Bandi

As readers of this blog will know, I’m a huge fan of translated literature, especially when it gives me an insight into a new country or culture.  It’s always exciting when I’m able to read my first book from a new … Continue reading

Posted in Bandi, Reading in translation | Tagged , , , | 8 Comments

Roman Hoodlums: ‘The Ragazzi’ by Pier Paolo Pasonlini

When I picked up Pasolini’s ‘The Ragazzi’, I think I was expecting a male counterpart to Elena Ferrante’s wonderful Neapolitan novels (I’ve read and reviewed ‘My Brilliant Friend‘ and ‘The Story of a New Name‘ on the blog).  Like Ferrante’s … Continue reading

Posted in Italian Literature, Pier Paolo Pasolini, Reading in translation | Tagged , , | 6 Comments