The Monthly Booking: October 2020

The autumn of intense publication continues, added to by the recent appearance of shortlists for the Booker Prize and the Deutscher Buchpreis, but as is so often the case my core reading list for October is composed of books already sitting on my shelves. A couple are relatively recent releases, while the others are stalwartsContinue reading The Monthly Booking: October 2020

Independent Press Profile: V&Q Books

In light of the recent lack of bookshops, I’ve started a new series in which I profile my favourite independent publishers. These are some of the most exciting addresses when it comes to finding original ideas, literature in translation and voices that are underrepresented in the mainstream. Each one is more than deserving of supportContinue reading Independent Press Profile: V&Q Books

‘Looking at the incandescent door’ [book review]

A review of No Presents Please by Jayant Kaikini, translated from the Kannada by Tejaswini Niranjana Mumbai. Say the name and it conjures multitudes: one of the world’s most populated cities, its streets awash with life, a sea of endless opportunity and dashed hopes, extreme wealth and abject poverty. Mumbai, with its grand colonial buildingsContinue reading “‘Looking at the incandescent door’ [book review]”

‘The difference between people and rivers’ [book review]

A review of The Book of Shanghai, ed. Jin Li and Dai Congrong Literature is unquestionably one of the best ways to get under the skin of a place, and if you’re keen to explore one city in particular it is equally incontestable that the superb ‘The Book of . . .’ series by CommaContinue reading “‘The difference between people and rivers’ [book review]”

‘A city devoid of tenderness’ [book review]

A review of Arid Dreams by Duanwad Pimwana, translated from the Thai by Mui Poopoksakul In ‘The Way of the Moon’, the penultimate story in Duanwad Pimwana’s collection Arid Dreams, a boy and his father sleep out on a beach. The boy is fascinated by the sparks rising from their campfire, recognising that an essentialContinue reading “‘A city devoid of tenderness’ [book review]”

‘Nothing but a soap bubble’ [book review]

A review of A Ballad of Remittent Fever by Ashoke Mukhopadhyay, translated from the Bengali by Arunava Sinha My first foray into Bengali literature has been an interesting experience, to say the least. Ashoke Mukhopadhyay’s A Ballad of Remittent Fever is an epic multi-generational saga that takes in much of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries,Continue reading “‘Nothing but a soap bubble’ [book review]”

‘Tiny tears in silk cloth’ [book review]

A review of The Stray Cats of Homs by Eva Nour, translated from the Swedish by Agnes Broomé Writing in the author’s note that comes at the end of The Stray Cats of Homs, Eva Nour explains her name. The pseudonym she uses is a combination of Swedish and Arabic names meaning ‘life’ and ‘light’,Continue reading “‘Tiny tears in silk cloth’ [book review]”

The Monthly Booking: August 2020

In my last post I mentioned that August is Women in Translation Month – the perfect opportunity to explore some of the incredible literature being written and translated by women (and support some independent presses while you’re at it!). Although I will be reading a couple of these titles in the coming month, my actualContinue reading “The Monthly Booking: August 2020”

Ten Books to Read for Women in Translation Month

August is nearly upon us, and that can mean only one thing: it’s just a handful of days until Women in Translation Month begins. Created in 2014 by Meytal Radzinski, Women in Translation Month is an international celebration of literature by women writing in languages other than English, as well as a movement that seeksContinue reading “Ten Books to Read for Women in Translation Month”

‘I prefer the edges’ [book review]

A review of The Frightened Ones by Dima Wannous, translated from the Arabic by Elisabeth Jaquette The clue comes fairly late on in the novel. ‘I don’t dare delve into the depths of things, I prefer the edges. Where I can be poised to escape.’ So says Suleima, the narrator of Dima Wannous’ The FrightenedContinue reading “‘I prefer the edges’ [book review]”

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