Women in Translation Month, also known as “August”, is the brainchild of Meytal Radzinski. Over the past few years I’ve had the pleasure of participating & here are some of the books I’m planning to disappear into over the month (if I can restrain myself from starting sooner. Spoiler alert – I can’t).
Check out Meytal’s Women in Translation blog, follow her on Twitter @biblibio & @read_wit. She’s also running #100BestWIT between now & August 25th. Nominate up to 10 of your favourite books by women in translation.
In no particular order, here are a few books I’ll definitely be reading between now & the end of Women in Translation Month. As usual, all of the books on this blog are available in audiobook.
Vernon Subutex 1 by French author Virginie Despentes, translated by Frank Wynne was short listed for the Man Booker International in 2018. The audiobook edition was published earlier this year by MacLehose Press & is narrated by Chris Harper.
The Complete Stories of Leonora Carrington, translated from the French & Spanish by Kathrine Talbot was published in audiobook by Tantor Audio earlier this month.
Carrington was a British born Mexican surrealist painter & writer who has an amazing back story if you want to check her out. I’d already read The Hearing Trumpet & am very keen to check out her stories. Tantor hit it out of the park with their production of Can Xue’s Love in the New Millennium (translated by Annelise Finegan Wasmoen & narrated by Janet Song), a book short listed for 2019’s Man Booker International. Tantor have Justine Eyre narrating Carrington’s collection, & it’s great to see an audiobook publisher producing these Women in Translation treasures for our listening delight.
When Death Takes Something From You Give it Back by Danish author Naja Marie Aidt, translated by Denise Newman, published by Quercus & read by Katherine Manners. This is the book I know least about, going into Women in Translation Month. It’s a memoir of the death of Aidt’s 25 year old son in a tragic accident & it sounds devastating.
I’ll definitely be reading more than just these three audiobooks during Women in Translation Month. I already have my eye on Belarusian & Nobel Prize winning author Svetlana Alexievich, probably The Unwomanly Face of War (Penguin RandomHouse UK).
Penguin Audio are releasing Polish author Olga Tokarczuc’s Drive Your Plow Over the Bones of the Dead on August 13. Last year Tokarczuc won the Man Booker International with her book Flights, which does make me very keen to check this one out.
I’ve seen The Wind That Lays Waste by Argentinian author Selva Almada (Highbridge) referred to as ‘Southern Gothic’ in style & likened to Flannery O’Connor so that has piqued my curiosity.
[**Stop the press** Yoko Ogawa’s latest novel, The Memory Police, releases in audio August 13. You bet I’ll be reading it. Check back for an update!]
I’m also planning to fit in some re-reads of favourites from previous years.
Follow along, join in. I’ll be posting my #WiTMonth reads on Twitter @getrochelle. I’ll be sharing my top 10 audiobooks by Women in Translation too – a ridiculously difficult decision. There are too many beautiful books just to pick 10!