The Independent Foreign Fiction Prize longlist

While the gods were sleepingWe like some translated fiction, so it’s great to have these titles longlisted for The Independent Foreign Fiction Prize

It’s warded to honour contemporary fiction in translation and worth £10,000 in prize money has published its longlist – chosen from 111 titles from 28 languages

The prize is divided equally between author and translator, recognising the importance of the translator in his/her ability to bridge the gap between languages and cultures.

Haruki Murakami –  Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage translated from the Japanese by Philip Gabriel. The book follows the title character, who as an adult goes on a journey to find out why his childhood friends stopped speaking to him suddenly.

Karl Ove KnausgaardBoyhood Island translated from the Norwegian by Don Bartlett. Boyhood Island is the third book in Knausgaard’s My Struggle series, and sees the author revisiting his childhood.

The dead lakeThen five German titles –

Look Who’s Back by Timur Vermes, translator Jamie Bulloch, about Hitler waking up in 2011.

F by Daniel Kehlmann about two brothers with nothing in common, translatorCarol Brown.

The End of Days by Jenny Erpenbeck, translator Susan Bernofsky, follows the possible lives of one woman in the 20th century.

The Giraffe’s Neck by Judith Schalansky translator Shaun Whiteside, about a biology teacher who believes in the survival of the fittest who has to learn to adapt.

Tiger Milk by Stefanie de Velasco translatory Tim Mohr, about two best friends growing up.

The Investigation by Jung-Myung Lee,  Korean translated by Chi-Young Kim, about a murder at a Korean Bloodlinesprison in 1944. Lee is only the second Korean writer to feature on the prize’s longlist in its 25-year history.

The Last Lover by Can Xue, Chinese, translator Annelise Finegan Wasmoen, tale of a series of husbands, wives & lovers.

Two Spanish novels – In the Beginning Was the Sea by Tomás González translator Frank Wynne, about a couple who abandon city life for a new life on a remote tropical coast. Wynne won in 2005 with his translation of Windows on the World by Frédéric Beigbeder

By Night the Mountain Burns by Juan Tomás Ávila Laurel translator Jethro Soutar, recounts the narrator’s childhood on a remote island off the West African coast.

The Ravens by Tomas Bannerhed translated from the Swedish by Sarah Death, a story of a father & son in ’70s Sweden.

Bloodlines by Marcello Fois, Italian, translated by Silvester Mazzarella, is about the lives and loves of the Chironi family.

The Dead Lake by Hamid Ismailov. Andrew Bromfield translated from Russian; it’s about the Cold War’s environmental legacy

While the Gods Were Sleeping by Erwin Mortier Dutch, translator Paul Vincent. An old woman looks back at her life.

The shortlist will be announced on Thursday 9th April. The winner will be announced on Wednesday 27th May.

 

 

 

Icelandic crime? Tick. Find out what’s new in translated fiction this week

dotAdichie – Americanah   – From the award-winning author of ‘Half of a Yellow Sun’, a powerful story of love, race and identity. As teenagers in Lagos, Ifemelu and Obinze fall in love. Their Nigeria is under military dictatorship, and people are fleeing the country if they can. The self-assured Ifemelu departs for America. There she suffers defeats and triumphs, finds and loses relationships, all the while feeling the weight of something she never thought of back home: race

Adler-Olsen – Guilt    Over 10 million books sold – 1987: Nete Hermansen, a young woman brutally assaulted in her youth, sterilised without her consent by a fanatical surgeon, and banished to Sprogo, the island for outcast women is planning her escape and her vengeance. And soon people begin to go missing and no one – certainly not the police – knows why, nor that individual cases are connected. Today: Carl Mørck and his assistants Assad and Rose in Department Q are examining old missing persons cases and spot a disturbing pattern from 1987 Crime translated from Danish

Glukhovskii – Metro 2034 A year after the events of ‘Metro 2033’, the last few survivors of the apocalypse, surrounded by mutants and monsters, face a terrifying new danger as they hang on for survival in the tunnels of the Moscow Metro. Russian 

Gramellini – Rock-a-bye baby It’s early morning on New Year’s Eve, and 9-year-old Massimo wakes up to a long, doleful cry and the disconcerting image of his dad being supported by two strangers. Inexplicably, his mother has disappeared, leaving only a vague trail of perfume in his room and her dressing gown bundled up at the foot of his bed. Where has she gone? Will she ever come back? And will Massimo be able to say sorry, after quarrelling with her the night before? Psychological fiction Translated from Italian

Minier – The frozen dead  The first victim is a horse: its headless body hangs suspended from the edge of a frozen cliff. On the same day as the gruesome discovery, a young psychiatrist starts her first job at a secure asylum for the criminally insane, just a few miles away. Commandant Servaz, a Toulouse city cop, can’t believe he has been called out over the death of an animal. Thriller translated from French

Roche – Wrecked   Elizabeth Kiehl’s perfect mother and wife act hides a painful past and a tragic rift in her psyche – the result of a terrible car accident in which her brothers and mother were involved. Extraordinarily candid, Charlotte Roche returns with a provocative, semi-autobiographical novel that explores what is expected of a 21st-century wife and mother. Translated from German

Sendker – A well-tempered heart Almost ten years have passed since Julia Win came back from Burma, her father’s native country. Though she is a successful Manhattan lawyer, her private life is at a crossroads; her boyfriend recently left her, she has suffered a miscarriage, and she is, despite her wealth, unhappy with her professional life. Julia is lost and exhausted. Translated from German

Tangye – How to fight Islamist terror from the missionary    A young Pakistani academic relives his days sharing a cramped apartment in Aarhus, Denmark, with two unlikely bedfellows. They are Ravi, his incorrigible best friend and a wry observer of the human condition; and Karim, their fundamentalist Muslim landlord, whose apparent double life soon intrigues his tenants. Translated from Danish

Tie – The bathing women  Sisters Tiao and Fan grew up in the shadow of the Cultural Revolution where they witnessed ritual humiliation and suffering. They also witnessed the death of their baby sister in a tragic accident. It was an accident they could have prevented; an accident that will stay with them forever. Translated from Chinese

Vandermerwe – Zebra crossing  Ghost. Ape. Living dead. Young Chipo has been called many names, but to her mother she had always just been Chipo, meaning gift. On the eve of the World Cup, Chipo and her brother flee to Cape Town hoping for a better life and to share in the excitement of the greatest sporting event ever to take place in Africa. But the streets are a dangerous place. South African fiction

Weil – Life with a star Following the Nazi occupation of Prague, Josef Roubicek, an ordinary ex-bank clerk, finds his whole world rendered extraordinary. Overnight he changes from being a simple Czech citizen to being a hunted Jew. Translated from Czech

Yrsa Sigurardottir – Someone to watch over me    A young man with Down’s Syndrome has been convicted of burning down his care home and killing five people, but a fellow inmate at his secure psychiatric unit has hired Thóra to prove Jakob is innocent. If he didn’t do it, who did? Translated from the Icelandic. Crime

Yrsa Sigurardottir – The silence of the sea    International bestseller. A luxury yacht arrives in Reykjavik harbour with nobody on board. What has happened to the crew, and to the family who were on board when it left Lisbon? Translated from the Icelandic. Crime