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TMR 15.4: “Marxist Hells Angel” [VERNON SUBUTEX]

Translator Katie Whittemore (Four by Four, The Communist's Daughter, World's Best Mother, Last Words on Earth) joins Chad and Brian to talk about the horrible actions of Patrice, and whether he could be redeemed, about childbirth, about Aïcha and Hyena, and about Disney. Funny and cutting, this episode explores the book's ...

TMR 15.3: “Vodka Satana” [VERNON SUBUTEX]

Caitlin Luce Baker of Island Books joins Chad and Brian to talk about a very nicely framed section of Vernon Subutex. We get introduced to Aïcha, who has, through Pamela Kant, just found out that her mom was a porn star before her death. (And had a fling with Alex Bleach.) We also get to see how the Hyena works (kind of), ...

TMR 15.2: “Yummy Mummy or MILF” [VERNON SUBUTEX]

Emma Ramadan—translator of Despentes's Pretty Things and Anne Garreta (among many others), and recent winner of the PEN Translation Prize—joins Brian and Chad to talk about how cool Despentes is, and how much slang she uses in her work. They also discuss the conflict that will drive the plot (Laurent Dopalet vs. ...

TMR 15.1: “Alexandre Bleach Is Dead” [VERNON SUBUTEX]

The fifteenth iteration of the Two Month Review kicks off in a big way, giving a quick overview of Virginie Despentes's life and work for Brian, and then launching into the wonderful world Despentes constructs filled with characters who are past their prime, who are flawed and don't hide their warts. The subtle ways in which ...

“Vernon Subutex 1” by Virginie Despentes [Why This Book Should Win]

Check in daily for new Why This Book Should Win posts covering all thirty-five titles longlisted for the 2020 Best Translated Book Awards.  Dorian Stuber teaches at Hendrix College and blogs about books at www.eigermonchjungfrau.blog. His work has appeared in Numéro Cinq, Open Letters Monthly, and Words without ...

“Animalia” by Jean-Baptiste del Amo [Why This Book Should Win]

Check in daily for new Why This Book Should Win posts covering all thirty-five titles longlisted for the 2020 Best Translated Book Awards.  Jeffrey Zuckerman is an editor at Music & Literature and a translator from French, most recently of Jean Genet's The Criminal Child (NYRB, 2020). A finalist for the ...

Smelling Books [BTBA 2020]

This week's BTBA post if from Justin Walls, a bookseller with Powell’s Books in Portland, Oregon who can be found on Twitter @jaawlfins. The conceptual artist Anicka Yi's olfactory-based installation Washing Away of Wrongs (2014, created in conjunction with French perfumer Christophe Laudamiel) consists of two ...