They've announced the longlist -- i.e. the nominated titles -- for the €100,000 2019 International DUBLIN Literary Award, 141 books nominated by libraries across (some of ...) the world, with 39 of them novels in translation, translated from 16 languages (all down from last year's 150 nominated titles, 48 of which were translations, translated from 18 languages).
Several of the nominated titles are under review at the complete review -- including two that aren't translations:
As usual, the list is a very mixed bag.
It's good to see some books that haven't attracted much attention -- at least in the US -- get a nod (Kruso and The Consequences, for example), while there are some top-notch literary titles (Compass and Radiant Terminus, among others).
But also in the running: E.L. James' Darker -- enough to call the whole exercise into question .....
As is consistently the case with this prize, certain languages -- basically the non-European ones ... -- are woefully under-represented.
While there is admirably a translation from the Māori (Sleeps Standing Moetu by Witi Ithimaera), and one from the Korean, there are no translations from: Arabic, Chinese, Hebrew, Japanese, Russian, Turkish, or any of the Indian languages, among others -- rather disappointing for a prize styling itself as international .....
The (much shorter) shortlist will be announced 4 April of next year, and the winner on 12 June.
They've announced that this year's winner of the Cundill History Prize -- "the world's leading history prize (US$75,000)" -- goes to The Dawn Watch: Joseph Conrad in a Global World, by Maya Jasanoff.
See the publicity pages from Penguin and William Collins, or get your copy at Amazon.com or Amazon.co.uk.
They've announced that the 2018 Premio Cervantes -- the leading Spanish-language author prize, paying out €125,000 -- will go to Uruguayan poet Ida Vitale.
If the name sounds familiar, it may be because I just mentioned her some two months ago, on the occasion when they announced she would be getting this year's US$150,000 Premio FIL de Literatura en Lenguas Romances, an author-prize for any Romance-language author -- not quite as well-established as the Cervantes, but with a decent winners-list of its own.
Just turned 95 (!), Vitale will pick up the Premio FIL de Literatura on the 24th, at the Guadalajara International Book Fair; she'll have to wait until next April for the Cervantes ceremony and that check .....
As I noted previously: she's not very well-known in the English-speaking world, and very little has been published in translation; it'll be interesting to see if this unheard of one-two punch of highest honors will smooth the way for more to appear.
They've announced the programme for next year's Salzburg Festival -- the summer Salzburger Festspiele -- and in The New York Times Michael Cooper has a good overview of what's coming, in The Salzburg Festival is Planning a Mythic Summer.
As always, the music is the big draw -- and it's an impressive selection, including performances of Mahler's Fifth and Ninth, Bruckner's Seventh, Strauss' Salome, and the intriguing-sounding Medeamaterial -- Pascal Dusapin's operatic take on Heiner Müller's text.
Of course, there will also be theatrical performances -- the traditional open-air Jedermann and Ödön von Horváth's Youth Without God, for example.
Oh, yes -- and one more thing: yours truly in performance: on 11 August you can attend my lecture On Reading, as part of the 'Drama Investigations'-series.
[Note that I suspect (hope !) that the times listed -- not just of my event -- are off by a bit; I'm quite certain the performances will be at more reasonable and realistic hours.]
The lecture will be in German (so, yes, it will actually be: Über das Lesen), but I expect to put together a written version, in English, afterwards, maybe somewhat expanded from the talk itself, which I'll make available in one form or another.
I'm honored to have been invited to participate, and I very much look forward to it.
They've announced the six-title shortlist for this year's DSC Prize for South Asian Literature.
I've only seen one of these -- Mohsin Hamid's Exit West -- but not even that one is under review at the complete review (yet).
The winner of the US$25,000 prize will be announced in late January.
Sad to hear that the great Mexican author Fernando del Paso has passed away; see, for example, the AP report.
Only his Palinuro of Mexico is under review at the complete review -- but News from the Empire is also an impressive work.
They've announced that The Long Take by Robin Robertson has won this year's Goldsmiths Prize, which rewards: "fiction that breaks the mould or extends the possibilities of the novel form".
The US edition is actually due out next week; see also the Picador publicity page, or get your copy at Amazon.com or Amazon.co.uk.
They announced the winners of this year's (American) National Book Awards last night.
The resurrected -- after several decades absence -- translation prize went to Margaret Mitsutani's translation of Tawada Yoko's The Emissary (published in the UK as The Last Children of Tokyo).
The fiction prize went to The Friend, by Sigrid Nunez.
The most recent addition to the complete review is my review of Iwaki Kei's Farewell, My Orange, just out in English from Europa Editions.
Interestingly, Europa write the author's name as 'Iwaki Kei' -- the 'Japanese' order (sur/family-name first), which has almost completely fallen out of use among US/UK publishers (except for academic presses).
(Japanese names are now almost invariably written 'Western'-style -- 'Haruki Murakami'; with Korean names the trend is towards Western-style, but it seems to be about half-half; with Chinese Western style is very much the exception ('Cixin Liu' is the most prominent example).)
I'm all for the Japanese style for Japanese names (which remains the house style at the complete review) -- but consistency seems more important to me, and since Europa publishes, for example, the work of 'Hiromi Kawakami' this seems an ... unusual choice.
(Also, booksellers are going to shelve this under 'K', aren't they ?
Not librarians, but booksellers will.))
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.
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).
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.)
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.
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.