One of my goals this year was to read more translated work and since we’re now in August, I thought it would be a good time to look over some of the books I’d like to get to this month in order to celebrate women in translation month! As always, if you have any recommendations I would love to read them.
Extracting the Stone of Madness by Alejandra Pizarnik
I was so excited when I saw that this one was available as an eBook from my library as I’ve been looking for a copy for years. I can’t even remember where I heard of Alejandra Pizarnik from, but I just remember that whoever talked about it made me really interested in reading Pizarnik’s poetry. I started this one as soon as the eBook was available—I’m halfway through it, but this edition includes both the original Spanish and the translated English. The poems are extremely beautiful and I’m hoping I can find some other collections of Pizarnik’s work in the future.
My Brilliant Friend by Elena Ferrante
I actually started My Brilliant Friend last month as part of Helen’s Eurovision Book Club but I got waylaid by bad health and couldn’t finish it in time. I decided not to participate this month in the book club so at least I have so time before the next pick is chosen to hopefully finish this one off. I’m hoping I do end up enjoying this one because it’s been on my list for a really long time.
The Age of Skin by Dubravka Ugrešić
Speaking of Eurovision, this was one I originally picked for Eurovisionathon but didn’t get around to it then. This is an essay collection about ‘the dreams, hopes and fears of modern life’. The author was from Yugoslavia before its collapse and is now living elsewhere after being exiled from Croatia. I’ve heard good things about this so I’m interested to give it a go.
The Shamer’s Signet by Lene Kaaberbøl
I actually read book one of this series, The Shamer’s Daughter during Eurovisionathon and I meant to get to this in June but that obviously didn’t happen. This is a sweet middle-grade series that’s translated from Danish. The first one was just so much fun to read and I can’t wait to continue on with these.
Grieving: Dispatches from A Wounded Country by Cristina Rivera Garza
I talked about this book at the very start of the year when I talked about wanting to read more translated books in 2021. It’s taken me this long, but I finally got the eBook and started reading it. I’m 26% of the way through and wow, this packs a punch. I feel like I’ve highlighted half of what I’ve read because Rivera Garza just has such a powerful way with words. I have a feeling this may end up being one of my favourite books of the year.
Are you reading anything for women in translation month?