Tag Archives: Other Press

SETTING THE RECORD STRAIGHT: MERYEM ALAOUI’S “STRAIGHT FROM THE HORSE’S MOUTH,” TRANSLATED FROM FRENCH BY EMMA RAMADAN

Alaoui’s novel, as hilarious as it is political, is a testament to the fact that literature does not have to be depressing or solemn to deliver a powerful message. Like Ramadan, I hope more publishers will invest in translating playful books that appeal to diverse readerships while defying stereotypes and expanding perspectives.

Often Petty, Definitely Bourgeois: Caterina Bonvicini’s “The Year of Our Love,” Translated from Italian by Antony Shugaar

By Alex Valente Caterina Bonvicini’s The Year of Our Love, translated by Antony Shugaar, is the story of Olivia and Valerio, who meet and grow up together in the same house while belonging to different families and class, who lose each other and find each other again several times, and who maintain a bizarre romantic […]

“There’s No Place Left on Earth That’s Peaceful”: Zülfü Livaneli’s “Disquiet,” translated from Turkish by Brendan Freely

Livaneli is a household name in Turkey and an outstanding figure in the cultural and political life of his native country. A writer, poet, composer, producer, film director, and political activist, Livaneli was named a Goodwill Ambassador by UNESCO in 1996 for his contributions to world peace through music and literature.

Selfhood and Narration: Goliarda Sapienza’s “Meeting In Positano,” Translated from Italian by Brian Robert Moore

By Maria Morelli Written in 1984, Meeting in Positano marks the last volume of Goliarda Sapienza’s Autobiography of Contradictions (as she herself labelled her unorthodox autobiographical project) which began in 1967 with Lettera Aperta (Open Letter) and which her premature demise brought to an abrupt end. Departing from the narratological approach that had marked the […]

Loyalty in Language: Marco Balzano’s “I’m Staying Here,” Translated from Italian by Jill Foulston

By Maria Massucco The opening chapters of Marco Balzano’s I’m Staying Here find the narrator Trina’s memory coming into focus around a time of historic upheaval: Until that time [spring of ’23], life had kept pace with the rhythm of the seasons, especially in these border valleys. Like an echo that fades away, history seemed […]

“I’d like to believe you”: Peter Stamm’s “The Sweet Indifference of the World,” Translated from German by Michael Hofmann

Both Stamm and Hoffmann have earned the right to be self-congratulatory — The Sweet Indifference is virtuosic.

In Love, at War, with Homer: Theodor Kallifatides’ “The Siege of Troy,” Translated from Swedish by Marlaine Delargy

By Kirk Ormand Few works have been translated as often, or as with as many different poetic and political programs, as Homer’s Iliad. Kallifatides’ brief version, written originally in Swedish, is his attempt to bring the daunting epic to a new generation of readers (“Afterword,” 203). He accomplishes this by telling the story of a […]

Word and Mirror: Burhan Sönmez’s “Labyrinth,” Translated from Turkish by Ümit Hussein

By Sevinç Türkkan Modern Turkish literature in English translation has always been meager. The Turkish language and culture with their liminal position across the imaginary East-West divide have been a cause for anxiety, reluctance, and uncertainty for publishers. It is, however, encouraging to see that contemporary writers other than the giants of Turkish letters in […]

Gradations of Love: Mihail Sebastian’s “Women,” Translated from Romanian by Philip Ó Ceallaigh

  By Mihaela Moscaliuc Née Iosef Hechter, Mihail Sebastian (1907-1945) was a Jewish Romanian prose writer, playwright, journalist, and lawyer who left us chilling testimonies of the milieu leading up to and spanning World War II, which Sebastian survived at great emotional cost, only to be killed by a truck in 1945. Women appeared in […]

Oliver Hilmes-Berlin1936

‘AFTER THE OLYMPICS WE’LL GET RUTHLESS’: Berlin 1936 by Oliver Hilmes, translated by Jefferson Chase

Reviewed by Peter Hegarty Translator Jefferson Chase would have found Oliver Hilmes’s Berlin 1936: Sixteen Days in August pleasantly familiar. A resident of Berlin, he walks the same streets as Hilmes’s characters. He knows their haunts, the places where they lived, caroused, suffered. He can easily visit the austerely beautiful Olympic stadium on which the […]

Eshkol Nevo-Three Floors Up

I WAS HOPING YOU’D TELL ME WHO I AM: ESHKOL NEVO’S THREE FLOORS UP TRANSLATED BY SONDRA SILVERSTON

Reviewed by Marcela Sulak The title of Eshkol Nevo’s most recent book, Three Floors Up, refers to Sigmund Freud’s concept of the unconscious, which Freud likened to three floors of a mansion: the id, the ego, and the superego. The three protagonists of the three-part novel, each of whom lives on a different floor of […]

Agnes-Peter Stamm

SMOTHERED BY A STORY: PETER STAMM’S AGNES, TRANSLATED BY MICHAEL HOFMANN

Reviewed by Daniel Kennedy Although Agnes is the sixth of Peter Stamm’s books to be published in the US by Other Press in Michael Hofmann’s translation, it is in fact his debut novel. With this slim volume, first published in 1998, Peter Stamm established himself as one of the most promising Swiss writers of his […]

Lacombe Lucien

Creating Dangerously: Louis Malle and Patrick Modiano’s Lacombe Lucien: The Screenplay, Translated by Sabine Destrée

Reviewed by Alex Andriesse It’s easy to be cynical about Patrick Modiano’s recent explosion into English. Since winning the 2014 Nobel Prize in Literature, Modiano has rocketed overnight from relative obscurity to anglophone-literary-world fame. Before the award was announced, fewer than a dozen of his thirty-odd books had been published in English. In the roughly […]

Herve Le Tellier- Electrico W

Dissecting Layers: Hervé Le Tellier’s Electrico W, Translated by Adriana Hunter

Reviewed by Lara Vergnaud Electrico W is about fragments – of time, memory, language and relationships, which rudely brush against one another, and which don’t seem to cohere until they do. This latest work by experimental French author Hervé Le Tellier, published in France by JC Lattès in 2011, and now available in English thanks […]