This post originally appeared on the Frankfurt Book Fair blog. I highly recommend visiting the official blog for interesting posts from Richard Nash, Alex Hippisley-Cox, and Arun Wolf
Back in February, a publishers’ roundtable took place in New Delhi to talk about opportunities of new markets, new models, new collaborations, that could develop amid the global financial crisis. Entitled “GlobalLocal: New Directions in Publishing,” this conference included the likes of Juergen Boos, Frankfurt Book Fair director; Ajay Shukla, managing director of McGraw-Hill India; Stella Chou, managing director of China business development, HarperCollins China; and Richard Charkin, executive director, Bloomsbury Publishing.
Personally, I wish I could’ve attended this (or at least have a chance to visit New Delhi—there must be some book related festival or organization that would like to fly a poor publisher/journalist over to write up some events . . . right? hello?), but thanksfully the German Book Office New Delhi has now produced a volume collecting the transcripts of the roundtable, afterthoughts on the conference, and essays from a variety of important thinkers and publishers.
Obviously I haven’t had time to read this volume, but anyone interested in the future of publishing will definitely want to hunt down GBO New Delhi director Akshay Pathak and get a copy. It’s totally nerdy, but just reading the titles of the panels and essays has me all excited: “Independent Publishing: Challenges and Advantages,” “The Way Ahead: The Global Financial Crisis and its Impact,” “An Independent Future: Indian Publishing, Global and Local,” and several other subtitled and nonsubtitled pieces.
Prose translators will likely disagree, but I believe translating poetry requires a significant level of talent, a commitment to the text, and near mania, all of which suggests that the undertaking is the greatest possible challenge. The task is to. . .
The biggest issues with books like The Subsidiary often have to do with their underpinnings—when we learn that Georges Perec wrote La Disparition without once using the letter E, we are impressed. Imagine such a task! It takes a high. . .
Following The Infatuations, Javier Marías’s latest novel seems, like those that have preceded it, an experiment to test fiction’s capacity to mesmerize with sombre-sexy atmospheres and ruminative elongated sentences stretched across windowless walls of paragraphs. Thus Bad Begins offers his. . .
Death by Water, Kenzaburo Oe’s latest novel to be translated into English, practically begs you to read it as autobiography. Like The Changeling, as well as many other works not yet released in English, Death by Water is narrated in. . .
Jocelyne Saucier’s Twenty-One Cardinals is about the type of unique, indestructible, and often tragic loyalty only found in families. For a brief but stunningly mesmerizing 169 pages, Twenty-One Cardinals invited me in to the haunting and intimate world of the. . .
We know so very little; so little that what we think to be knowledge is hardly worth reckoning with at all; instead we ought to settle for being pleasantly surprised if, on the edge of things, against all expectations, our. . .
Many of Virginie Despentes’s books revolve around the same central idea: “To be born a woman [is] the worst fate in practically every society.” But this message is nearly always packaged in easy-to-read books that fill you with the pleasure. . .
Ilja Leonard Pfeijffer’s La Superba is appropriately titled after the Italian city of Genoa, where, after escaping the pressures of fame in his own country, the semi-autobiographical narrator finds himself cataloguing the experiences of its mesmerizing inhabitants with the intention. . .
It took reading 44 pages of Intervenir/Intervene before I began to get a sense of what Dolores Dorantes and Rodrigo Flores Sánchez were up to. Recurring throughout these 44 pages—throughout the entire book—are shovels, shovel smacks to the face, lobelias—aha!. . .
As presaged by its title, contradiction is the theme of Peter Stamm’s novel, All Days Are Night. Gillian, a well-known television personality, remains unknowable to herself. And Hubert, a frustrated artist and Gillian’s lover, creates art through the process of. . .