Weekly News Roundup, 13th February 2015

This week's literary highlights from across the world

Happy Friday-the-thirteenth, everybody! Let’s hope the unlucky date doesn’t squash whatever romantic plans you may have for Valentine’s Day tomorrow….

First Scandinavian crime novels took the translation world by storm. Now it’s Brazil‘s turn. At the Globe and Mail, Chris Frey argues that Brazilian author Daniel Galera’s latest novel, Blood-Drenched Beard (translated by Alison Entrekin), is poised to launch a veritable torrent of popular Brazilian literature in English translation. And so that you may be on the pulse for years to come: announcing the Literary Hub, future center for all (English-language) things book-and-web-based.

Meanwhile, you may not be too sad about late-night standby Jon Stewart leaving his eponymous Daily Show, but book publicists surely are: turns out his show sold a lot of books (and I thought everybody skipped the interview!).

It feels like we mention the Russian classics every week here at the Roundup. But with good reason! And lately, Anna Karenina is on the tip of everyone’s tongues: Flavorwire has compiled the best covers of the Tolstoyian classic. In light of the practically simultaneous recent publication of two separate translations of Tolstoy’s tome, translation friend Russell Scott Valentino responded to all the annoyingly wrong ways critics are writing about translation. Got any bones to pick yourself?

Speaking of unfairly unsung literatures, in case you haven’t plumbed Asymptote‘s great archives, if you read only English there’s still a high chance you know next to nothing about the great literary offerings from China. So here’s a literary primer via the Millions. And this year, the PEN World Voices Festival will focus its energy on the African diaspora, featuring panels that celebrate the incredibly diverse literary voices hailing from a continent that is all-too-often ignored or generalized. But the festival will also feature two translation-focused events, helmed by none other than Margaret Carson and editor Sal Robinson, and featuring heavyweights like Susan Bernofsky, Scott Esposito, and Michael Orthofer! The keynote speaker is none other than Nigerian-American author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, and the festival begins May 4.

Finally, this week mourned the unfortunate passing of two world voices. French-Algerian author Assia Djebar will never be forgotten for her extraordinary voice of womanhood and writing. And Polish writer Tadeusz Konwicki’s writing certainly “won’t die with him.”