The longlist for the 2007 German Book Prize was announced yesterday. (See the full list after the jump.)
Here’s what spokesperson for the judges, Felicitas von Lovenberg had to say about the selection of these 20 books from the 117 submitted titles:
“Without allowing ourselves to be seduced by celebrity or distracted by the pressure of originality, we have chosen twenty titles that reflect the unusual diversity and vitality in German-language literature as it presents itself this autumn in particular.”
Good to know that they stood up to the pressure of originality. It’s always a bad sign with originality counts for something.
But seriously, although I’m not familiar with any of the specific titles on this list, a number of the authors were recommended to me at one time or another by the wonderful people at the German Book Office, including Julia Franck, Thomas Glavinic, Michael Lentz, and Robert Menasse.
According to the official site, Signandsight.com has info and sample translations for the “shortlisted authors.” I couldn’t find this online, but hopefully it’s on its way.
German Book Prize Longlist
Thommie Bayer: Eine kurze Geschichte vom Glück (Piper, August 2007)
Larissa Boehning: Lichte Stoffe (Eichborn Berlin, August 2007)
Julia Franck: Die Mittagsfrau (S. Fischer, September 2007)
Thomas Glavinic: Das bin doch ich (Hanser, August 2007)
Lena Gorelik: Hochzeit in Jerusalem (SchirmerGraf, March 2007)
Sabine Gruber: Über Nacht (C.H. Beck, January 2007)
Peter Henisch: Eine sehr kleine Frau (Deuticke, August 2007)
Michael Köhlmeier: Abendland (Hanser, August 2007)
Katja Lange-Müller: Böse Schafe (Kiepenheuer & Witsch, August 2007)
Michael Lentz: Pazifik Exil (S. Fischer, August 2007)
Harald Martenstein: Heimweg (C. Bertelsmann, February 2007)
Pierangelo Maset: Laura oder die Tücken der Kunst(kookbooks, September 2007)
Robert Menasse: Don Juan de la Mancha (Suhrkamp, August 2007)
Martin Mosebach: Der Mond und das Mädchen (Hanser, August 2007)
Mathias Nolte: Roula Rouge (Deuticke, March 2007)
Gregor Sander: abwesend (Wallstein, March 2007)
Arnold Stadler: Komm, gehen wir (S. Fischer, May2007)
Peter Truschner: Die Träumer (Zsolnay, March 2007)
John von Düffel: Beste Jahre (DuMont, August 2007)
Thomas von Steinaecker: Wallner beginnt zu fliegen (FVA, February 2007)
Though far from the most convincing reason to read literature in translation, one common side effect is learning of another culture, of its history. Within that, and a stronger motivation to read, is the discovery of stories not possible within. . .
Despite cries that literature is dead, dying, and self-replicating in the worst way, once in a while a book comes along to remind readers that there’s still a lot of surprise to be found on the printed page. To be. . .
“I was small. And my village was small, I came to know that in time. But when I was small it was big for me, so big that when I had to cross it from one end to the other,. . .
A few weeks after moving into a farm house in the Welsh countryside, Emilie, an expatriate from the Netherlands, starts to think about her uncle. This uncle tried to drown himself in a pond in front of the hotel where. . .
Think back to the last adventure- or action-type book you read. Wasn’t it cool? Didn’t it make you want to do things, like learn to shoot a crossbow, hack complicated information systems, travel to strange worlds, take on knife-wielding thugs,. . .
In Aira’s Shantytown, while we’re inside the characters’ heads for a good portion of the story, the voice we read on the page is really that of Aira himself, as he works out the plot of the book he’s writing.. . .
Noir is not an easy genre to define—or if it once was, that was a long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away; as a quick guess, maybe Silver Lake, Los Angeles, 1935. When two books as different as. . .
Some time ago I read this phrase: “The page is the only place in the universe God left blank for me.”
Pedro Mairal’s short novel The Missing Year of Juan Salvatierra is more about these blank spaces than the usual full. . .
“What if even in the afterlife you have to know foreign languages? Since I have already suffered so much trying to speak Danish, make sure to assign me to the Polish zone . . .”
So reads a typical aphoristic “poem”. . .
If you somehow managed to overlook the 2012 translation of Andrés Neuman’s breathtaking Traveler of the Century (and woe betide all whom continue to do so), you now have two exceptional works of fiction from the young Argentine virtuoso demanding. . .