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Karen Russell: Swamplandia!

I’m a Karen Russell fan.  I love the way she dips into the fantastic to examine the quotidian.  When I look back at The New Yorker‘s “20 Under 40″ project (now seven months in the past), her short story, “The Dredgeman’s Revelation,” comes out as my favorite of the bunch.  There are so many shades in…

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2011 Best Translated Book Award Longlist

I’ve been looking forward to this for days! The Literary Conference by César Aira, tr. from the Spanish by Katherine Silver (New Directions) The Golden Age by Michal Ajvaz, tr. from the Czech by Andrew Oakland (Dalkey Archive) The Rest Is Jungle & Other Stories by Mario Benedetti, tr. from…

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Hannah Pittard: The Fates Will Find Their Way

Trevor reviews Hannah Pittard’s debut, The Fates Will Find Their Way. Read the full post.

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Alice Munro: “Axis”

Click here to read the abstract of the story on The New Yorker webpage (this week’s story is available only for subscribers).  Alice Munro’s “Axis” was first published in The New Yorker‘s January 31, 2011, issue. It’s always nice to see that the weekly story is by Alice Munro.  “Axis,”…

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2011 NBCC Award Finalists

The National Book Critics Circle announced the finalists for its 2011 award.  The winners of each category will be announced on March 10. Fiction Jennifer Egan: A Visit from the Goon Squad Jonathan Franzen: Freedom David Grossman: To the End of the Land Hans Keilson: Comedy in a Minor Key…

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Heinrich Böll: The Clown

Melville House is publishing “The Essential Heinrich Böll” over the next year.  This month they have published The Safety Net, Billiards at Half-Past Nine, and The Clown (Ansichten eines Clowns, 1963; tr. from the German by Leila Vennewitz, 2010).  In April, we will see The Train Was on Time, Irish…

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Hisham Matar: “Naima”

Click here to read the abstract of the story on The New Yorker webpage (this week’s story is available only for subscribers).  Hisham Matar’s “Naima” was first published in The New Yorker‘s January 24, 2011, issue. Hisham Matar’s new book Anatomy of a Disappearance comes out in the UK in…

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Alexandros Papadiamantis: The Murderess

Trevor reviews Alexandros Papadiamantis’s 1903 novel, The Murderess. Read the full post.

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Vivant Denon: No Tomorrow

Trevor reviews Vivant Denon’s 1777 novella, No Tomorrow. Read the full post.

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Amos Oz: “The King of Norway”

Click here to read the abstract of the story on The New Yorker webpage (this week’s story is available only for subscribers).  Amos Oz’s “The King of Norway” was first published in The New Yorker‘s January 17, 2011, issue.  It was translated from the Hebrew by Sondra Silverston. For the…

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2011 ALA Book Awards

Newberry Medal: Winner:  Moon Over Manifest, by Clare Vanderpool Honors:  Dark Emperor and Other Poems of the Night, by Joyce Sidman, illustrated by Rick Allen; Heart of a Samurai, by Margi Preus; One Crazy Summer, by Rita Williams-Garcia; and Turtle in Paradise, by Jennifer L. Holm Caldecott Medal: Winner: A…

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George Saunders: The Brief and Frightening Reign of Phil

The last piece of fiction The New Yorker published in 2010 was a great short story by George Saunders, “Escape from Spiderhead” (click here for my thoughts on the story).  In his interview that accompanied the short story, Saunders said he originally planned on that story being a novel.  Honestly,…

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Louise Erdrich: Shadow Tag

Before reading Shadow Tag (2010) I had never read anything by Louise Erdrich, though I’ve encountered her name time and time again, most recently when her novel The Plague of Doves was a finalist for the Pulitzer prize in 2009.  I am not sure I would have read this one,…

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Louise Erdrich: “The Years of My Birth”

Click here to read the abstract of the story on The New Yorker webpage (this week’s story is available only for subscribers).  Louise Erdrich’s “The Years of My Birth” was first published in The New Yorker‘s January 10, 2011, issue. Having never read anything by Erdrich before (though she has…

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J.M. Coetzee: Dusklands

I am on a Coetzee completion project.  Though I have liked Coetzee’s early books that I have read, I have not liked them as much as his later books, so I was a bit nervous to go back and read Coetzee’s first book, Dusklands (1974).   I wondered if I would find it…