The Independent Foreign Fiction Prize is a literary prize worth paying attention to. It selects the best fiction from around the world and rewards the unsung heros of the publishing world – the translators – as well as the authors. The £ 10,000 prize money is shared between the author and the translator.
There are some true gems to be found amongst translated fiction, all too often overlooked by book reviewers and readers. Of the books on their long-list this year, I have read and reviewed Karl Ove Knausgaard’s A Death in the Family and I am currently reading Javier Marías’ The Infatuations. The list is amazingly diverse: Japanese, Chinese, Iraqi, French, Israeli, no less than two Icelandic authors, and many more. A short-list of six will be announced on 6 April.
Have you read any of them? If so, please let me know if they are any good!
Independent Foreign Fiction Prize 2014 long-list
Sinan Antoon The Corpse Washer (Arabic; translated by the author) Yale University Press
Hassan Blasim The Iraqi Christ (Arabic; trans. Jonathan Wright) Comma Press
Julia Franck Back to Back (German; trans. Anthea Bell) Harvill Secker
Sayed Kashua Exposure (Hebrew; trans. Mitch Ginsberg) Chatto & Windus
Hiromi Kawakami Strange Weather in Tokyo (Japanese; trans. Allison Markin Powell) Portobello Books
Karl Ove Knausgaard A Man in Love (Norwegian; trans. Don Bartlett) Harvill Secker
Andrej Longo Ten (Italian; trans. Howard Curtis) Harvill Secker
Ma Jian The Dark Road (Chinese; trans. Flora Drew) Chatto & Windus
Andreï Makine Brief Loves that Live Forever (French; trans. Geoffrey Strachan) MacLehose Press
Javier Marías The Infatuations (Spanish; trans. Margaret Jull Costa) Hamish Hamilton
Hubert Mingarelli A Meal in Winter (French; trans. Sam Taylor) Portobello Books
Yoko Ogawa Revenge (Japanese; trans. Stephen Snyder) Harvill Secker
Audur Ava Ólafsdóttir Butterflies in November (Icelandic; trans. Brian FitzGibbon) Pushkin Press
Jón Kalman Stefánsson The Sorrow of Angels (Icelandic; trans. Philip Roughton) MacLehose Press
Birgit Vanderbeke The Mussel Feast (German; trans. Jamie Bulloch) Peirene Press