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Reissues & New Translations

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Posted on 9 Mar 2013 17:05:16 GMT
VCBF (Val) says:
Thank you M. D.

Posted on 7 Mar 2013 20:10:38 GMT
M. Dowden says:
Val, I believe the novel is about love in the time of a dictatorship. I don't know anyone who has read it but it has apparently been banned in its home country. Look around though if you are thinking about getting it, rumours are that due to its being banned it has hit the web with free ebook editions. I don't know though whether these are in the original language, or in translation. Hope this helps a bit.

Posted on 7 Mar 2013 05:24:50 GMT
VCBF (Val) says:
Do any of you know anything about this one?
Paranoia: A Novel
The author is from Belarus and it has been translated. Amazon are of the opinion I might want to pre-order it.

Posted on 6 Feb 2013 09:38:15 GMT
Dan Holloway says:
Yes, Stu's punctuation can be a little wonky, but he's always thoughtful and the book recommendations he makes are always wonderful :)
Hmm - too many recommendations I really want to read and so little time - and then I popped into my local bookstore just for a chat yesterday and came out with a copy of Dennis Johnson's Train Dreams

Posted on 5 Feb 2013 23:55:57 GMT
P. J. says:
I like the absence of atmosphere in The Plains, and Murnane's flat style when describing things/a way of life/people who are just so odd. For me, it actually gave that oddity a gravitas.

In reply to an earlier post on 5 Feb 2013 21:35:09 GMT
monica says:
What I most like about it was that though it was a work of fiction I was constantly stopping to think about what Lem had to say. The rare fictional book that makes one stop to think normally does so because one wants to think about a character, the style, or to puzzle out what's going on, not in the way thatnon-fiction & this book do. Suppose you know there's newly-translated philosophical work by Lem out/coming out soon.

On other hand, rather wish Murnane had decided either to write an essay re ideas in The Plains or to write a novella drowning in atmosphere--or both. Might be sort of thing I'll like far more when I re-read it . . .

Posted on 5 Feb 2013 21:25:09 GMT
Last edited by the author on 5 Feb 2013 21:56:46 GMT
monica says:
Bless you, Dan. Because of your mention elsewhere, I did read the Zambra I have last night & I quite liked it. I knew about a couple of those sites--I'll have another look at Winston's Dad one; I remember being attracted by sorts of books he reviewed but being a bit put off by style of writing or punctuation or something like that. Tony Malone is new for me and shall certainly have a look.

I've read of one that's not new here--came out last winter--but that I learned of only because Orthoffer mentioned its being new in US: Where Tigers Are at Home. Length might attract you, P.J.; I'm attracted to it despite the length.

I've mentioned this elsewhere but it really belongs here: Open Letter are selling the first 25 books they published, many of them hardcover, at cut-rate of $200, and now there's another $25 discount on the lot. (Postage sounds outrageous, but with that extra discount it amounted to half what OL paid to send books to Ireland. First I feel guilty for spending that amount on something of a pig in a poke, then I feel guilty instead about so worthy a press losing money on postage . . . )

Posted on 5 Feb 2013 14:38:30 GMT
Dan Holloway says:
This may be the place to mention Alejandro Zambra's Ways of Going Home which is just out.

May I also heartily recommend two excellent blogs I'm sure you know:
Stu Allen's "Winston's Dad" blog is a superb compendium of books he has read and loved from across the globe (go to tags under the "books from" category for a list of every country from whcih he's read books)
Tony Malone's Tony's Reading List is more limited geographically but also truly wonderful. At the moment I believe he is reading and reviewing German Books (do you know the excellent site "New German Books" by the way? but I first came across him thanks to our shared love of Japanese literature

Posted on 27 Jan 2013 13:17:31 GMT
P. J. says:
Glad you liked it, monica, although it's a shame it didn't 'stick.' It's the human element that really struck me, that you could create a sci-fi novel that says much more about the human condition than most 'naturalistic' novels. The political aspect is overstated, in my opinion; it is much more about our abandonment, our isolation as a species, and I found that a genuinely moving idea. I also like it because it displays what an excellent writer Lem was, someone who is erudite and funny and insightful. None of the other translations I have read have done him justice as a writer, only as a man of ideas.

Posted on 21 Jan 2013 19:13:08 GMT
monica says:

Thanks for recommendations, P.J. Bought The Plains & His Master's Voice because of them. Read latter last week and enjoyed it, though not sure it's one of those that will stick with me; already have forgotten a fair bit about it . . .

Posted on 21 Jan 2013 19:08:26 GMT
monica says:

Posted on 30 Nov 2012 12:32:26 GMT
P. J. says:
I'll pop my review of it up on amazon in a sec, if that helps. It's different but much better than Solaris in my opinion.

In reply to an earlier post on 30 Nov 2012 11:32:54 GMT
monica says:
Cheers. This one seems to be translated from Polish, so I'll have a go.

Posted on 29 Nov 2012 21:41:04 GMT
P. J. says:
Ah, I'll have to use this as a means of urging you to read Lem's His Master's Voice then. Consider yourself urged.

Posted on 29 Nov 2012 09:34:07 GMT
monica says:
When Edelweiss Flowers Flourish by Sartov just translated; seems to be a sci-fi novel dealing with folk beliefs v technology and a veiled commentary on Soviet state's effect on rural life. I do think we've not mentioned any Kyrgyz fiction before, and this sounds interesting.

PJ, I avoid using goodreads on the whole because all the clicking needed to read reviews annoys me, so not signed in.

Posted on 6 Nov 2012 19:09:29 GMT
P. J. says:
I will get back to you eventually, monica. I'm on goodreads more often than on here these days, look me up on there if you're signed up.

Posted on 4 Nov 2012 17:28:03 GMT
monica says:
Provisional list of all literature translated into English (though I think in US only) this year is available here: (Three Percent, again.) Without links as it is, I don't find it terrifically helpful, but someone might . . .

Posted on 29 Oct 2012 20:46:18 GMT
monica says:
So nice to see both those publishers mentioned, and I've thought about posting a long list of publishers who issue works in translation, but it would entail a lot of messing about w. folders & files and probably be of interest to no one. Helpful reviews on 3% site as well, and the Hesperus books I've got are quite attractive as books.

Jelinek wrote a play about Robert Walser, Her Not All Her, & it's just out as one of Sylph's Cahiers editions. (And someone commenting on a review told me that Krasznahorkai/Neumann, who collaborated on animalinside, have just had another published in the same series, but I can't find any mention of such a thing on Sylph site.)

P.J., please do return to the question when you like: The fancy-dress party led to the institution of Semiotics Thursdays, a weekly salon, and fancy dress not required for entry so long as one arrives bearing a traffic cone or 'Lift Not Working' notice.

Posted on 16 Oct 2012 16:01:06 BDT
Last edited by the author on 4 Nov 2012 18:49:52 GMT
Miss M says:
You might be interested in Three Percent, a center/publishing company (Open Letter Books) affiliated with the University of Rochester (NY).

"Three Percent launched in the summer of 2007 with the lofty goal of becoming a destination for readers, editors, and translators interested in finding out about modern and contemporary international literature.
The motivating force behind the website is the view that reading literature from other countries is vital to maintaining a vibrant book culture and to increasing the exchange of ideas among cultures. In this age of globalization, one of the best ways to preserve the uniqueness of cultures is through the translation and appreciation of international literary works. To remain among the world's best educated readers, English speakers must have access to the world's great literatures. It is a historical truism and will always remain the case that some of the best books ever written were written in a language other than English."

Posted on 16 Oct 2012 09:35:14 BDT
I'd have to give a shoutout to the great books put out by Hesperus, both new translations and obscure short works. They didn't want my translation project, alas (though they told me I came damn close, and I've no reason to disbelieve them), but I've never read a book from them that I didn't enjoy.

Posted on 16 Oct 2012 00:15:58 BDT
P. J. says:
I want to come back to the question of whether a subtext or message is often imagined by the reader, monica. However, for now i'd like to mention that NYRB are reissuing The Skin by Malaparte next year (in April i think). Chevengur next, please.

Posted on 16 Sep 2012 21:23:26 BDT
monica says:
Jolliff, any novel whose author has even heard of A. Gorky is worth looking into. From amazon description, sounds like execution would be all: it could be intelligent, quirky, haunting or could be sophomoric, self-conscious, and clunky. And for all the crime fanboys/girls who, I am sure, turn to this thread each morning over coffee, there's The Thief. New & first translation of author into English, & bk won an apparently v. prestigious prize in Japan. (I'm no judge of books in the genre, but whilst it's not Simenon or J. Thompson, it's one I'll keep despite its having child who I think is meant to tug at heartstrings as secondary character.

More exciting to me is that Atlas have just issued Living are Few, the Dead Many, The and Roussel's last play, Dust of Suns, The. Goody goody gumdrops.

PJ, your post after the edit doesn't make me want to stand up and cry out 'Yes, but . . . !' as the first version (as I remember it) did. I'd say as perhaps you would as well that a good writer is able to make a novel work regardless of whether the reader ever notices that there's a Message in it. And I wonder too what extent & how often a message, ulterior motive, subtext is only a projection by the reader. Dunno--but you're both invited to my semiotics fancy dress party--bags on flowing robes & lycra wig of the signified, though.

Posted on 6 Sep 2012 06:41:51 BDT
M. Jolliff says:
Death Sentences has just gone on my wish list as it is the first translation of this japanese surrealist sci-fi cult classic that I came across a review of. One for Mon maybe?

Posted on 6 Sep 2012 00:12:01 BDT
Last edited by the author on 6 Sep 2012 18:55:27 BDT
P. J. says:
It depends how it is done, monica. One could say the subtext of a lot of brilliant novels seem quite irritating once one isolates them. I'd say a very good writer is able to make a novel work regardless. See Ice by Kavan, which has an equally dreary feminist subtext, or House in The Country by Donoso which is brazen in its, quite intellectually unengaging, allegory.

In reply to an earlier post on 5 Sep 2012 21:33:07 BDT
Read Voicemail Received Silence is Deafening by Andrew Intesso, Bente trapped in a triangle love story
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This discussion

Discussion in:  fiction discussion forum
Participants:  11
Total posts:  41
Initial post:  30 Jul 2012
Latest post:  9 Mar 2013

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