Next year, I hope to start the “Best Translations” list a lot earlier in the fall, giving us more time to research, read, recommend, and decide on which to include. One thing that would help though would be a single source of all the original translations published throughout the year. And once again, since this fits the Three Percent mission, there’s no reason why we can’t start a sort of informal catalog of translations here . . .
So, beginning in January, we’re going to start posting monthly (or bi-weekly) round-ups of forthcoming original literary translations. There’s a slew of great presses that send us catalogs, review copies, etc., and there are a number of people I’ll be able to contact to make sure we’re including as many books as possible.
That said, it’ll be hard to catch everything, so, if you work for a publisher, or know one, please feel free to pass along information about this project, and anyone interested can e-mail me at chad.post at rochester dot edu with title, author, translator, language, pub month, and price for forthcoming titles and we’ll include them in the postings.
We’ll also try and review a couple of these titles each month, and include short descriptions of a few each week as well.
This is one of the primary goals for Three Percent in 2008 (along with increasing the number of reviews of untranslated titles featured here), so I thought I’d pass this along . . .
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. . .