INTERVIEW WITH JAMIE BULLOCH, TRANSLATOR OF LINDA STIFT’S THE EMPRESS AND THE CAKE

Linda Stift's The Empress and the Cake is one of the best and strangest books I've come across this year. I reviewed it several weeks ago, and I'm still thinking about it--it left me with so many questions, and I'm already itching to read it a second time. Now--normally, when a novel is so strange, … Continue reading INTERVIEW WITH JAMIE BULLOCH, TRANSLATOR OF LINDA STIFT’S THE EMPRESS AND THE CAKE

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REVIEW: ABANDON, BY SANGEETA BANDYOPADHYAY, TRANSLATED BY ARUNAVA SINHA (2017)

Abandon--the story of Ishwari and her son Roo, as they try to build a new life together after a long period of separation--is one of those books that are so good I was for a long time discouraged from reviewing it. How could I possibly do it justice? The imagery is so strange and wild, … Continue reading REVIEW: ABANDON, BY SANGEETA BANDYOPADHYAY, TRANSLATED BY ARUNAVA SINHA (2017)

REVIEW: NAONDEL, BY MARIA TURTSCHANINOFF, TRANSLATED BY A.A. PRIME (2017)

TW: rape. From the very first page, we know how¬†Naondel ends: seven women escape a life of imprisonment and oppression by sailing away on the eponymous boat; they live the rest of their lives on a magical island; on the island they create a feminist utopia where women and girls from across the world find … Continue reading REVIEW: NAONDEL, BY MARIA TURTSCHANINOFF, TRANSLATED BY A.A. PRIME (2017)

REVIEW: MARESI, BY MARIA TURTSCHANINOFF, TRANSLATED BY ANNIE PRIME (2016)

From the start, we know not everything will be alright. Maresi, the novel's eponymous young narrator, tells us that she does not want to bring it all up again--the smell of blood, the sound of crunching bone--and that it is difficult to talk about death. Nevertheless, she must write, so that the events she witnessed, … Continue reading REVIEW: MARESI, BY MARIA TURTSCHANINOFF, TRANSLATED BY ANNIE PRIME (2016)

DOUBLE REVIEW: GHACHAR GHOCHAR AND THE MUSSEL FEAST

A family whirring away like clockwork, day in day out, everybody with their specified roles and functions, everybody more or less happy to be a smaller part within a collective--until an unexpected interruption of their normal rhythms exposes the sinister nature of what keeps the machinery going. This description could apply both to Vivek Shanbhag's … Continue reading DOUBLE REVIEW: GHACHAR GHOCHAR AND THE MUSSEL FEAST

REVIEW: THE EMPRESS AND THE CAKE, BY LINDA STIFT, TRANSLATED BY JAMIE BULLOCH (2016)

TW: bulimia. What a strange, strange book. What a strange, strange, strange book. The Empress and the Cake is about a young woman's bulimia, but it's also about an elderly woman's obsession with the Empress Elisabeth of Austria (1837-1898), best known to many as "Sissi." After the surprising dedication ("For me") and a suitably decadent … Continue reading REVIEW: THE EMPRESS AND THE CAKE, BY LINDA STIFT, TRANSLATED BY JAMIE BULLOCH (2016)

#WITMONTH REVIEW: AMATKA, BY KARIN TIDBECK, TRANSLATED BY HERSELF (2017)

August is Women in Translation Month (#WITMonth), so I'm only reviewing books by women in translation. Vanja emptied a box of pencils, lined them up on the shelf, amd pointed at them one by one. 'Pencil, pencil, pencil.' It wasn't long before the words flowed together. 'Pencil-pencil-pencil-pen-cilpen-cilpen- cilpen-cilpen-cilpen--' The last pencil in the row shuddered. … Continue reading #WITMONTH REVIEW: AMATKA, BY KARIN TIDBECK, TRANSLATED BY HERSELF (2017)

3 BOOKS BY WOMEN IN TRANSLATION YOU CAN READ IN 1 OR 2 SITTINGS

August is Women in Translation Month (#WITMonth), and, so far, I've only reviewed books by women in translation (here, here and here). Today, I'm doing something different: recommending three books by women in translation that, being well under 200 pages, could be easily read in one or two sittings. I thought about picking only books … Continue reading 3 BOOKS BY WOMEN IN TRANSLATION YOU CAN READ IN 1 OR 2 SITTINGS

#WITMONTH REVIEW: THE IMPOSSIBLE FAIRYTALE, BY HAN YUJOO, TRANSLATED BY JANET HONG (2017)

August is Women in Translation Month (#WITmonth), so I'll only review books by women in translation.¬† On the night of the day I started The Impossible Fairytale, I dreamed I was one of first three people in the city to read it. We met to discuss it every Wednesday. We were like Macbeth's witches. When … Continue reading #WITMONTH REVIEW: THE IMPOSSIBLE FAIRYTALE, BY HAN YUJOO, TRANSLATED BY JANET HONG (2017)

#WITMONTH REVIEW: PANTY, BY SANGEETA BANDOPADHYAY, TRANSLATED BY ARUNAVA SINHA (2016)

August is Women in Translation Month (#WITmonth), so I'll only review books by women in translation. A woman steps into an apartment in Kolkata. It's nighttime, and none of the light switches work. She finds a mirror, but when she touches her hair her reflection does not replicate the gesture. She showers, and as she's … Continue reading #WITMONTH REVIEW: PANTY, BY SANGEETA BANDOPADHYAY, TRANSLATED BY ARUNAVA SINHA (2016)