The International Man Booker 2019 winner has been announced.!
In an exclusive UK appearance before the publication of her highly anticipated new novel, Adèle, see the author of Lullaby at South Bank in 2019
In her new novel, Leïla Slimani turns her focus on a woman who appears to have it all, working as a journalist and living with her surgeon husband and their young son in an idyllic Parisian apartment. But all is not as it seems.
LONDON — “Celestial Bodies,” a family saga set against Oman’s transition from slave trading center to oil producer, became on Tuesday the first novel originally written in Arabic to win the Man Booker International Prize.
The book’s author, Jokha Alharthi of Oman, shares the award of 50,000 pounds, about with its translator, Marilyn Booth.
The prize, given each year to the best book translated into English and published in Britain, is widely seen as the world’s most significant award for translated fiction. It is distinct from the more well-known Booker Prize, for fiction originally published in English.
Bettany Hughes, the chairwoman of the judging panel, called “Celestial Bodies” “a book to win over the head and the heart in equal measure
Melissa Harrison has been revealed as the UK winner of the European Union Prize for Literature 2019 with All Among the Barley (Bloomsbury Circus), a novel exploring the dangers of nationalism and xenophobia.
Set in rural England between the world wars, All Among the Barley raises questions about the dangers of nationalism, and how easily a love of place can be corrupted into something dark and exclusionary.
Harrison said: "In these politically unstable times I'm very proud to represent Britain in the European Union Prize for Literature with a novel that explores the dangerous allure of nativism, nostalgia and xenophobia."
All Among the Barley was named the UK winner from a shortlist of three novels featuring Michael Hughes’ Country (John Murray Publishers) and Benjamin Wood’s A Station on the Path to Somewhere Better (Simon & Schuster).
Now in its tenth year, the EU Prize for Literature recognises the best emerging fiction writers across Europe and involves 36 European countries. Each year national juries in a third of the participating countries nominate their own winning authors.
UK jury chair O’Reilly said: “All Among the Barley by Melissa Harrison emerged as the winner from an impressively strong shortlist. We are thrilled to be putting Melissa forward as the best emerging author in the UK for the overall prize. Speaking on behalf of the UK jury we got immense joy from reading all the books eligible and were delighted to be part of the EUPL championing British authors to a broader European audience.”
Guy Gunaratne has won The Authors' Club's 2019 Best First Novel Award for In Our Mad and Furious City (Tinder Press).
Guest adjudicator, Louise Doughty, presented the £2,500 award at a reception at the National Liberal Club in London on Wednesday 22nd May. She said: “Guy Gunaratne’s In Our Mad and Furious City is an extraordinary act of ventriloquism: five very different narrative voices tell of their lives on the Stones Estate during an inner-city summer of tension and violence, and the lives of these characters burst from the page in a work of stunning originality and pace that heralds a terrific literary career to come.”
Harper Collins is launching an imprint HarperVia, which will focus primarily on publishing fiction in translation with an “eye for books that celebrate the universal desire for discovery, understanding and connection through exceptional storytelling,” HC said. HarperOne president and publisher Judith Curr sees the HarperVia We’re building a new model for world English-language publishing, creating a platform where books can be discovered,” she said, adding that she sees HarperVia as “something like Netflix, telling stories from all over the world.”
Jonathan Cape will publish Salman Rushdie’s new Don Quixote-inspired novel, Quichotte, in August.
Inspired by Miguel de Cervantes' classic text, Quichotte tells the story of an ageing travelling salesman who falls in love with a TV star and sets off to drive across America on a quest to prove himself worthy of her hand. “Quichotte’s tragicomic tale is one of a deranged time, and deals, along the way, with father–son relationships, sibling quarrels, racism, the opioid crisis, cyber-spies, and the end of the world,” Cape said.
Bea Hemming, acting publishing director at the Vintage imprint, acquired UK and Commonwealth publishing rights from Andrew Wylie of the Wylie Agency. It will be published on 29th August 2019.
“We are thrilled to be publishing a new novel from one of the world’s great storytellers,” Hemming said. “Quichotte sees Salman Rushdie at the height of his powers. Intricately plotted, wildly original, tender, comic and deeply moving, Quichotte is both an ingenious homage to Cervantes and a book that speaks urgently to our unstable times.”
Rushdie has previously spoken of his enthusiasm for Cervantes’ Don Quixote, which was published in two parts in 1605 and 1615.
Rushdie has written 13 novels including Midnight’s Children (Vintage), for which he won the Man Booker Prize and Booker of Bookers Prize, and one collection of short stories, as well as works of non-fiction including memoir Joseph Anton (Vintage). He was knighted in 2007 for services to literature.
His books have been translated into more than 40 languages and he has sold 698,600 books for £5.56m since 1998, with Midnight’s Children (1995 edition) his biggest seller, with 160,538 copies sold (all figures according to Nielsen BookScan). His last novel, a modern day thriller titled, The Golden House, was published by Cape in September 2017.
The first novel to be translated from Uzbek into English, described as an "Uzbek Game of Thrones" has won the ERBD Literature Prize.
The Devil's Dance by Hamid Ismailov and translators Donald Rayfield and John Farndon won the €20,000 prize, with the award to be split between author and translators. The runners-up Soviet Milk by Nora Ikstena, translated from Latvian by Margita Gailitis (Pereine Press), and Drive your Plow over the Bones of the Dead by Olga Tokarczuk, translated from Polish by Antonia Lloyd-Jones (Fitzcarraldo Editions) received €2,000, also split between author and translator.
The international prize, created in 2017 by the EBRD, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, in partnership with the British Council was presented at a ceremony at the Bank’s Headquarters in London on Thursday 7th March.
Set in the 19th century, The Devils’ Dance, published by indie Tilted Axis Press, is a novel in two parts. The story of an unwitting courtesan, who navigates the intrigues of the courts and harems of the Uzbek emirates and khanates at a time when Britain and Russia are competing for influence in the region, is told alongside the trials of a well-known Uzbek writer and literary dissident who is imprisoned and executed at the hands of the Soviet state in the late 1930s.
Rosie Goldsmith, chair of the independent judging panel, said: “This is a thrilling novel about two real-life Central Asian poets. The 19th century Uzbek poet-queen Oyxon, once a humble slave girl, rose to power and influence, marrying three Khans along the way and was ultimately threatened with execution. …..”
English PEN is marking the milestone of having supported 250 titles via its Writers in Translation programme, launched in 2006.
The writers' association's programme has supported a list of books translated from 47 languages, with authors from 75 different countries featured. Genres range from poetry to non-fiction, children’s literature and literary fiction.
The first supported book was Anna Politkovskaya’s Putin’s Russia (Harvill Secker), translated by Arch Tait. Many award-winners have featured on the programme including several books that were shortlisted for the Man Booker International Prize.
"Since its inception the programme has seen a remarkable growth in the range of languages supported, with recent titles included lesser-translated languages such as Thai, Belarusian, Farsi and Basque,” English PEN said. "There is also a welcome upward trend of women writers being translated into English. The programme has been an important contributor to the ongoing growth in the translated literature sector.”
To celebrate the 250 books in translation, English PEN is hosting Alia Trabucco Zerán, author of The Remainder, translated by Sophie Hughes and published by And Other Stories, at the PEN Salon at London Book Fair on Tuesday (12th March) at 11am. There will also be a themed panel discussion chaired by writer and translator Daniel Hahn on 6th May at the Brighton Festival.
Antonia Byatt, director of English PEN, said: "The programme has transformed the literary landscape in the UK. English PEN has long been a champion of lesser know voices, and the translation programme is a vital part of this."
Tasja Dorkofikis of Arts Council England said: "The PEN Writers in Translation fund, sponsored by the Arts Council and run with great success and commitment by English PEN, is instrumental in the recent increase in the numbers and diversity of books from other languages appearing in British bookshops."
Granta Books has acquired UK and Commonwealth rights in Earthlings, a new novel by Sayaka Murata, author of Convenience Store Woman. Senior commissioning editor Anne Meadows concluded the deal with Amy Hundley at Grove Atlantic, on behalf of Kohei Hattori at the English Agency Japan.
Set in contemporary Japan, Earthlings is the story of two children who believe they have come from outer space. Granta says: "Forcibly separated by their families, cruelly treated by the very people who should care for them, they must struggle against society to find each other again. Their reunion, when it comes, will have spectacular and violent consequences."
Meadows said: “It has been such a joy seeing readers fall in love with Convenience Store Woman, and I am so happy that we’ll publish a new Murata novel next year. Earthlings is a wild and powerful story of unconventional love, of the strictures placed particularly on young women and the strange paths you might take to find freedom.”
Convenience Store Woman - the story of an oddball shop assistant trying to make an appearance of fitting in - has acquired cult status since it was published in 2016. It has sold more 1.5m copies in Japan alone and been translated into more than 30 languages. In the UK, it has sold 22,672 copies since July through Nielsen BookScan's TCM, and is a regular in the Small Publishers Fiction top 20.
Granta Books will publish Earthlings in summer 2020. The translator will be Ginny Tapley Takemori, who also translated Convenience Store Woman.
No Presents Please’ originally written in Kannada by noted author Jayant Kaikini and translated into English by eminent translator Tejaswini Niranjana has been announced as the winner of the prestigious DSC Prize for South Asian Literature 2018 at the Tata Steel Kolkata Literary Meet in Kolkata, India.
The DSC Prize has always encouraged writing in regional languages and translations, and this is the first time that a translated work has won the prize. This magnificent book gives us a protagonist that is vivid yet full of contradictions, spirited yet lonely, embattled yet big-hearted – the city of Mumbai. Empathy and survival are the constant,
Abir Mukherjee has won the 2018 Wilbur Smith Adventure Writing Prize (£15,000) with his second novel, A Necessary Evil (Vintage). The historical crime tale, set in India in 1920, sees Captain Wyndham and Sergeant Banerjee of the Calcutta Police Force investigate the assassination of a Maharajah's son.
Niso Smith, founder of The Wilbur & Niso Smith Foundation, which makes the awards, described the book as "an exciting example of how adventure writing can transport you to a different time and place, teach you something new, and truly allow you to lose yourself in a story."
Mukherjee said of his win: “I’m thrilled to have been awarded the Wilbur Smith Adventure Writing Prize. It’s an honour for me to have had my work selected from a shortlist of such wonderful and talented authors. The Wilbur and Niso Smith Foundation do so much to support young writers and further the promotion of literacy around the world, and I hope to work closely with the Foundation to help further these goals and advance adventure writing as a genre.”
Elena Ferrante is to write a weekly newspaper column for the Guardian’s new look Weekend magazine starting on Saturday (20th January).
The regular column will cover the pseudonymous Italian novelist’s thoughts “on life, love, childhood, ageing, the female experience and everything in between”. Her inaugural column will focus on her first love.
According to a Guardian report, the author of the bestselling Neapolitan series said she was “attracted to the possibility of testing myself” with a regular column describing the experience “a bold, anxious exercise in writing”. The pieces will be translated by Ferrante’s regular collaborator Ann Goldstein.
The reclusive Italian author’s four-part series, published by Europa Editions, follows Elena Greco and her friend Raffaella Cerullo, who she has always called Lila, in the first year of primary school in 1950. Set against a dangerous and vibrant Naples, the story spans 60 years of their lives as Elena tries to unravel the mystery of her friend.
The announcement follows the launch of the Guardian in tabloid format on Monday (15th January). In addition to the refreshed Weekend magazine, the paper will also include the Review section revamped as a “beautiful and stylish books magazine”. Other sections include food magazine, Feast, as well as Travel and the listings supplement Guide.
Melissa Denes, editor of Weekend, revealed she was "thrilled to be working with Elena Ferrante on her first newspaper column” and described it as “a new adventure for her and for Guardian Weekend magazine.”
“Every week, she will be writing a personal piece, covering subjects from sex to ageing to the things that make her laugh. I can't wait to see where she will take us," Denes said.
Weekend has been redesigned as part of the Guardian’s move to tabloid format with the first new look issue appearing on Saturday (20th January).
In Chinelo Okparanta’s new novel Under the Udala Trees, a chance meeting between Ijeoma, a Christian Igbo, and Amina, a Muslim Hausa, begins a friendship that turns quickly to passion. “This was the beginning,” Okparanta writes. “Our bodies being touched by the fire that was each other’s flesh … Tingly and good and like everything perfect in the world.”
Ijeoma’s secure, stable childhood has already unravelled by then. The novel is set in 1968, one year into the Biafran conflict, and Ijeoma’s world is beset by “the ruckus of armored cars and shelling machines, bomber planes and their loud engines sending shock waves through our ears”. Things grow worse. Her father, “a man who liked to wallow in his thoughts”, becomes so consumed by sorrow for his massacred people that he refuses to seek refuge during an air raid over their town of Ojoto. When Ijeoma and her mother Adaora emerge from a nearby bunker, they discover his blood-soaked body.