Category Archives: translation

The Ideal Reader book 9: The Story of the Stone by Cao Xuequin volume 1 (translated by David Hawkes)

The Story of the Stone, perhaps more recognisably known as The Dream of the Red Chamber, is an epic work of Chinese fiction, my copy in five volumes weighing in at a massive 2480 pages long. I bought it ages ago … Continue reading

Posted in Chinese, Classics, Epic, fiction, The Ideal Reader, translation | 3 Comments

The Book of Disquiet by Fernando Pessoa (translated by Margaret Jull Costa)

I started reading The Book of Disquiet during that very quiet, reflective period immediately after Christmas and it was both the perfect and the worst time to start it. Perfect because I was in exactly the right frame of mind … Continue reading

Posted in fiction, memoir, outwith, translation | 6 Comments

Mokusei! A Love Story by Cees Nooteboom (translated by Adrienne Dixon)

I have never really been able to explain what it is that I love about the work of Cees Nooteboom, it falls into the genre of those things which evoke an inexplicable feeling, something so nebulous and delicate that I … Continue reading

Posted in fiction, translation | 6 Comments

A Message from God in the Atomic Age by Irene Vilar (translated by Gregory Rabassa)

I could have chosen this book for the title alone, but its acquisition was more about securing myself a more diverse range of voices than that currently available in my library. Which is an admission that I bought this book, … Continue reading

Posted in death, memoir, non-fiction, translation | Leave a comment

The Unwomanly Face of War by Svetlana Alexievich (translated by Pevear & Volokhonsky) #WITMonth

  “There can’t be one heart for hatred and another for love.” A while ago I read Svetlana Alexievich’s extraordinary Chernobyl Prayer, her account – by collating lots of witness accounts – of the Chernobyl incident, the meltdown and the … Continue reading

Posted in #WITMonth, history, non-fiction, translation, war | 11 Comments

The Murder of Halland by Pia Juul (translated by Martin Aitken) #WITMonth

I’ve been reading a fairly heavy-going book, something that can only be read in short bursts however attentive or determined a reader I might be, and whilst I have been avoiding simultaneous readings whilst I have been trying to focus … Continue reading

Posted in #WITMonth, fiction, quick reads, translation | 4 Comments

Lost Paradise by Cees Nooteboom (translated by Susan Massotty)

“That is what everyone has always been looking for, isn’t it? A lost paradise?” Several years ago before they refurbished and made soulless Manchester’s Central Library, pulping a significant proportion of what was an eclectic and varied collection, I happened across this slender, unassuming little book and unwittingly opened a door I didn’t expect to. […]

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Posted in re-read, translation, travel | 4 Comments