I don’t have a lot to say, analysis-wise, about this most recent update. At the moment, there are 419 titles included for 2013, compared to 452 for 2012. By year’s end, I suspect these will be almost identical, especially considering that there are books I’m aware of—such as forthcoming titles from Frisch & Co.—that I can’t add yet because the ISBN info isn’t available. (Database talk! The ISBN is the primary key, so without anything to enter into that field, I can’t create a record.) Also, the count for December publications (19 in 2013 compared to 34 in 2012) points to the fact that there are releases coming up that haven’t made their way to my desk/inbox or PW.
One thing worth noting is that Dalkey has regained the lead as the number one publisher of translations in the U.S., overtaking AmazonCrossing. How did they do this? Money from the Korean Government! Seriously. Way back when, South Korea signed a deal with Dalkey to publish approximately a shit load of Korean books. The first ten are coming out in November, and with those added in here, Dalkey moves back up into first place with 31 translations of fiction and poetry coming out in 2013.
The thing I’m always interested in are the most translated languages. At the moment, the top 10 are:
That’s an unusually large gap between French and German. For example, last year there were 67 French books and 57 German. Not sure what’s going on there . . .
Enjoy downloading and looking through these, and hopefully you’ll find some interesting books and publishers to check out!
1 As always, these spreadsheets detail all original translations to come out in English, in the U.S. (either by a U.S. press, or a foreign press with legit U.S. distribution) during the specified time period. And by original I mean books that have never ever ever appeared in any English translation ever ever ever. No retranslations of Proust, no “new editions” comprised of pieces from previously published books, etc. Sometimes I miss things thought—include things that shouldn’t be, or don’t include books that should—so email me at chad.post [at] rochester.edu if you see any errors.
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. . .