By Edward Nawotka
In the United States, Open Letter Books and Three Percent have announced the 25-strong fiction longlist of fiction titles for their second annual “Best Translated Book Award.” As prize organizer Chad Post notes: “There are some classic authors (Robert Walser, Robert Bolano), some relative unknowns (Wolf Haas, Ferenc Barnas, Cao Naiqian), and a nice geographical mix (including books from Egypt and Djibouti).”
The longlisted authors come from 23 different countries, write in 17 different languages, and are published 15 different publishers. Starting next Monday, the Three Percent blog will highlight one book per day until February 16th, when the shortlisted finalists for both fiction and poetry will be announced. (There’s no word on if a poetry longlist will be released.)
Two of my favorite translated titles of the year — Wonderful World by Javier Calvo and The Unit by Ninny Holmqvist — missed the list. But from what I know of the books on the longlist, it looks like you can’t go wrong with any of the nominated titles.
Mark Orthofer, who was one of the nominating judges, offers his analysis of the list at The Literary Saloon.