Memory At Bay by Evelyne Trouillot, tr. Paul Curtis Daw

Title:  Memory At Bay Author:  Evelyne Trouillot Translator:  Paul Curtis Daw Publisher: University of Virginia Press, Charlottesville & London (2015) ISBN:  978 0 8139 3809 7 Extensive reading is not necessary to understand that Haiti has a complicated and troubling history.  The brutal sugar plantations of Saint-Domingue, a nation formed out of the world’s first successful slave revolt, decades of precarious and corrupt governments, a devastating … Continue reading Memory At Bay by Evelyne Trouillot, tr. Paul Curtis Daw

Under the Udala Trees by Chinelo Okparanta

No writer wants the defining trait of his or her novel to be that it reminds critics and readers of other best-selling and/or critically acclaimed novels. The Nigerian writer Chinelo Okparanta’s debut novel, Under the Udala Trees, does this from the first page… actually from the very first sentence. I had a farm in Africa, at the foot of the Ngong Hills. The equator runs … Continue reading Under the Udala Trees by Chinelo Okparanta

Hollow Heart by Viola Di Grado, tr. Antony Shugaar

Title:  Hollow Heart Author:  Viola Di Grado Translator:  Antony Shugaar  / Italian Publisher:  Europa Editions, New York (2015) ISBN:  978 1 60945 271 1 “I’m not afraid of death because I don’t believe in it. It’s just getting out of one car, and into another.” ― John Lennon “The boundaries which divide Life from Death are at best shadowy and vague. Who shall say where … Continue reading Hollow Heart by Viola Di Grado, tr. Antony Shugaar

The Travels of Daniel Ascher by Déborah Lévy-Bertherat, tr. Adriana Hunter

Title:  The Travels of Daniel Ascher Author:  Déborah Lévy-Bertherat Translator:  Adriana Hunter Publisher:  Other Press ISBN:  978 159051707 9 The Travels of Daniel Ascher by Déborah Lévy-Bertherat is a generally inoffensive, if slight, novel brought out just in time for Summer.  According to a Publisher Weekly article, Other Press is marketing the title as a “YA Crossover”, which speaks to the awkward position the book occupies.  The … Continue reading The Travels of Daniel Ascher by Déborah Lévy-Bertherat, tr. Adriana Hunter

Sphinx by Anne Garreta, tr. from the French by Emma Ramadan

Title: Sphinx Author: Anne Garréta Translator: Emma Ramadan Publisher: Deep Vellum Publishing, Dallas (2015) ISBN: 978 1 9419 2009 1 Since finishing Anne Garréta’s Sphinx, spectacularly translated by Emma Ramadan, I’ve been trying to pinpoint exactly what it is about this book that so dazzles me.  I keep returning to the passage – …The party lasted well beyond the usual timeframe. Strictly speaking, I was no … Continue reading Sphinx by Anne Garreta, tr. from the French by Emma Ramadan