They've announced that this year's Nordic Council Literature Prize, the leading Scandinavian literary prize, goes to the story-collection Efter Solen, by Danish author Jonas Eika; the work was chosen from thirteen finalists selected from eight Nordic territories/languages; see also the Basilisk publicity page.
The Nordic Council Literature Prize has a very impressive track record -- with nine previous winners under review at the complete review.
In the autumn issue of the Hudson Review Charles McGrath -- who ran The New York Times Book Review a while back -- finds he has: "trouble thinking about one without thinking of the other, and so that's what I propose to do now -- to think about Philip Roth while also thinking about John Updike"; the result is the fairly interesting piece on Roth/Updike; certainly worth a look.
Among his observations:
(T)hey were American writers of a very particular sort—it’s what they most had in common.
They both practiced a very American kind of realism—sharing an almost religious faith in the importance of facts and details for their own sake.
Both writers had a passion for exactitude, for getting things right.
There's no Updike under review at the complete review -- I read most of his work before I started the site -- but his reviews in The New Yorker (and then the fat collections of them) certainly were very important for me; surprisingly, among his fiction, it's probably some of the short stories that made the most lasting impression (which says a lot for someone who is as novel-obsessed (and short-story-avoiding-if-I-can-help-it) as I am).
There's a decent amount of Roth under review at the site; mostly the later stuff, with The Plot Against America the obvious stand-out.
They're hardly the first authors I'd turn back to -- but certainly also not authors I'd turn away from (beyond a few real duds among their vast outputs); lots here that's problematic, but certainly enough that's worthwhile, and I'll certainly continue to keep them on my shelves.
They've announced the winners of this year's (Canadian) Governor General's Literary Awards -- winners in seven categories, twice over, once in English and once in French.
The English-language fiction winner was Five Wives by Joan Thomas, the French Le drap blanc by Céline Huyghebaert.
They've announced the finalists for the prix Renaudot -- the number two French literary prize, after the Goncourt, which, knowing its place, is announced minutes after the big Goncourt announcement (on 4 November); there are five fiction finalists and three in the 'essai'-category; see, for example, the Livres Hebdo report.
The most recent addition to the complete review is my review of Mishima Yukio's Life for Sale.
This came out in the UK a few months ago, but is only coming out in the US next April.
It is one of the many, many, many pulpier Mishima-works previously unavailable in English; presumably it rose to the top of that heap because it's been getting more attention in Japan recently, with a TV mini-series and a stage version.
Here's hoping it's successful, prodding publishers to translate more .....
(The Mishima estate is represented by the Wylie Agency, so don't hold your breath; they tend to ... bide their time.)
The Malta Book Festival will run 6 to 10 November; among the events is one on the work of National Book Prize Lifetime Achievement Award-winner Lillian Sciberras, and in the Times of Malta Ramona Depares has a Q & A with The doyenne of Maltese literature.
Her Shadows In Penumbra came out in English translation in 2016 but is the rare not-even-available-on-Amazon title -- but you can get your copy at the maltaonlinebookshop.com; it sounds pretty intriguing -- see reviews in the Malta Independent (by Vincent Vella) and the Times of Malta (Paul Xuereb).
Tous les hommes n'habitent pas le monde de la même façon, by Jean-Paul Dubois
See also the Livres Hebdo report.
Other titles by three of the four finalist-authors are under review at the complete review: twenty-four by Nothomb; Hotel Crystal and Paper Tiger by Rolin; and Vie Française (UK title: A French Life) by Dubois -- and Coatalem's backlist looks pretty fun as well.
Soif is a final-hours-of-Jesus novel, so that sounds ... interesting; I'm looking forward to eventually seeing it -- and figure this is pretty likely to be translated, whether it wins the prize or not.
The winner will be announced 4 November.
Daniel Kehlmann's Tyll is only due out in English in February, but the publicity engine is already at work, as J.W.McCormack writes about how Daniel Kehlmann Forays Into Folklore with 'Tyll' -- which, he suggests, is: "almost certainly Kehlmann's magnum opus" in this fairly extensive career-overview.
I recently finally got my copy of the novel and should be covering it soon.
The most recent addition to the complete review is my review of Nikolaj Frobenius' De Sade's Valet.
This 1996 novel came out in English in 2000, from Marion Boyars, and was translated into many other languages; the early international success -- and the fact that it wasn't that successful, at least in the US/UK -- seems to have been a mixed blessing; given Frobenius' talents, more of his books should be available in English, but Dark Branches, from Sandstone Press, seems to be the only other one to date.
I'm always curious about de Sade-related titles -- but of course what I'm really looking forward to seeing is Contra Mundum's forthcoming three-volume Aline and Valcour; see their publicity page.
It's October, so apparently it's time for the best-of-2019 lists, with Publishers Weekly starting things off with their Publishers Weekly Best Books 2019.
One of their top 10 is actually under review at the complete review: From the Shadows, by Juan José Millás; there's also one from their best-fiction list, the just-reviewed The Factory, by Oyamada Hiroko.
And I should be getting to a few more of these.
They've announced the shortlists for this year's Saltire Literary Awards -- 'Scotland's National Book Awards'.
(The headline still says '2018', last I checked, but these are this year's shortlists.)
The winners will be announced 30 November.
They've announced the shortlists for this year's Irish Book Awards, in its many categories -- which, it's good to see, also include the Love Leabhar Gaeilge Irish Language Book of the Year.
The winners will be announced 20 November.
If you trust the French to pick the best American fiction, then the Grand prix de littérature américaine is for you -- and they've now decided on their three finalists: Valeria Luiselli's Lost Children Archive, Tommy Orange's There There, and Kevin Powers' A Shout in the Ruins; see, for example, the Livres Hebdo report.
The winner will be announced 8 November.
The British Crime Writers’ Association have announced the winners of this year's CWA Daggers, with A Long Night in Paris, by Dov Alfon and translated by Daniella Zamir taking the CWA International Dagger.
This is only coming out in the US next summer, but see the MacLehose publicity page, or pre-order your copy at Amazon.com or get your copy at Amazon.co.uk.
The Gold Dagger went to The Puppet Show, by M.W.Craven.
In this week's Times Literary Supplement they have an interesting piece where: 'Twenty-five writers reflect on the magazines and journals they have enjoyed over the years', Electric conversations.
Hard not to be ... uh, impressed by Thomas Meaney's extensive reading, among the responses.
The prix Femina has announced the finalists in its three categories -- French novel, foreign novel, and 'essais' (basically, non-fiction); see the Livres Hebdo report.
The only title under review at the complete review is foreign novel finalist Middle England.
The winners will be announced 5 November.
They've announced the six-title shortlist for this year's Baillie Gifford Prize for Non-Fiction (formerly the Samuel Johnson Prize); none of the titles are under review at the complete review.
The winner will be announced 19 November -- and will get £50,000.
They've announced the winners of this year's (Australian) Prime Minister's Literary Awards, with Gail Jones' The Death of Noah Glass winning in the fiction category; see, for example, the Text publicity page.
They've announced the three finalists for this year's Jan Michalski Prize for Literature, the CHF50,000 prize for a work of world literature "irrespective of the language in which it is written" (though they tend strongly towards the major/European languages, and books available in French, German, or English ...).
Among the finalists is a Patrik Ourednik -- written in French --, La fin du monde n'aurait pas eu lieu; see the Allia publicity page.
This is apparently due from Dalkey Archive Press soon -- pre-order at Amazon.com or Amazon.co.uk ? -- but I haven't seen this one yet.
The winner of the Jan Michalski Prize will be announced 4 December.
The Polish Literacką Nagrodę Europy Środkowej Angelus is an award for the best Central European work published in Polish, and they've announced that Georgi Gospodinov's The Physics of Sorrow has won this year's award.
Fourteen titles, selected from 105 qualified submissions, were longlisted -- with no Polish book making the final cut.
The 150,000 złoty prize money is pretty good: just over US$39,000.
The most recent addition to the complete review is my review of Michael Schmidt's Gilgamesh: The Life of a Poem.
I haven't reviewed any of the versions of the actual Gilgamesh, though I see I have Stephanie Dalley's Myths from Mesopotamia (Oxford University Press) and the John Maier/John Gardner Gilgamesh (Vintage) near at hand, so maybe I'll get to those; Schmidt says the Dalley is one of the: "best to build our reading on" -- though of course the edition I lust for is another of those he recommends (even more highly), A.R.George's The Babylonian Gilgamesh Epic (Oxford University Press) .....