Women In Translation Month: Books I Own, Books You May Want To Try

These are the hard copies of books I own which fit Women in Translation Month this August. I’m sure I have more on my Kindle and Nook, but I will have to go through those carefully to complete the list for next year:
The School of Possibilities by Seita Parkkola (translated from the Finnish by Annira Silver and Marja Gass)

Short listed for the 2006 Finlandia Junior Prize

Who Ate Up All the Shinga? by Park Wan-Suh (translated from the Korean by Yu Young-Nan and Stephen J. Epstein)

Me, Who Dove Into The Heart of the World by Sabina Berman (translated from the Spanish by Lisa Dillman)

Swimming to Elba by Silvia Avallone (translated from the Italian by Antony Shugaar)

Swimming to Elba

The Hunger Angel by Herta Muller (translated from the German by Philip Boehm)

The Hen Who Dreamed She Could Fly by Sun-Mi Hwang (translated from the Korean by Chi-Young Kim)

The Hen Who Dreamed She Could Fly


The Yellow Eyes of Crocodiles by Katherine Panchol (translated from the French by William Rodarmor and Helen Dickinson)

The Yellow Eyes of Crocodiles

Bonjour Tristesse by Francoise Sagan (translated from the French by Irene Ash)

Out by Natsuo Kirino (translated from the Japanese by Stephen Snyder)

Asleep by Banana Yoshimoto (translated from the Japanese by Michael Emmerich)


The Restaurant of Love Regained by Ito Ogawa (translated from the Japanese by David Karashima)

The Lake by Banana Yoshimoto (translated from the Japanese by Michael Emmerich)

Short listed for the Man Asian Literary Prize

I would have loved to participate in this challenge hosted by Biblibio, which many of my friends from the IFFP Shadow Jury (Jacqui, Tony M. and Tony) are doing. However, I have set aside August for Haruki Murakami’s latest release, Colorless Tzukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage. That novel, and the preparation for a new school year, will occupy my month most fully.
Still, I wanted to see what I own and offer up to you some reading possibilities. I know that Diane of Bibliophile by the Sea loved The Hen Who Dreamed She Could Fly. And my favorite from the list, though far from all are read, is Swimming to Elba. That novel is actually in my top five favorite adult books ever, the other four being Possession by A. S. Byatt, The Robber Bride by Margaret Atwood, The Secret History by Donna Tartt, and Kafka on the Shore by Haruki Murakami.

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20 thoughts on “Women In Translation Month: Books I Own, Books You May Want To Try

  1. I read The Lake by Yoshimoto just last month and really enjoyed it; I'd like to read some of her other books. This is a great list to draw from…I'm excited to check some of these books out. I tend to read more women authors than men for some reason. So, thanks for the recommendations!

  2. This is a terrific–and lovely to look at–list of books, Bellezza. I have read just a a few of the books here, but I enjoyed each very much. I may refer to this “Women in Translation” list from time to time. :-)

  3. I have The Lake for the Jaoanese Literature Challenge. But I've not read it yet, even though I thoroughly enjoyed Kitchen and others by Banana Yoshimoto. I, looking forward ton reading many of these myself, even though I own them. ;)

  4. I hope I can get to The Hen, too, before the end of the month. I have not read Mueller's book yet. It strikes me as quite oppressive, and I feel I have to gather my courage for it.

  5. That's a very interesting list, Bellezza, and thank you for the mention! I must get around to trying Banana Yoshimoto at some point. I already have a few others lined up for Women in Translation Month, but later this year perhaps. I can't recall if you're planning to look at her books as part of your Japanese Challenge?

    I must buy Bonjour Tristesse, too – it's been on my wish list for a while.

  6. Some of these have gone straight into my wish list. I hadn't heard of this challenge but since I happen to be reading a book that qualifies I might well join in now. It's an odd book called The Holy Woman by Quaisra Shahraz.

  7. Glad to hear you loved The Robber Bride, since I have just started reading it and I am quite impressed. AS for the list, Sagan is one of my favorites, I really enjoyed “Out”, which could be a good read for the Japanese Literature Challenge, “The Lake” is interesting as well, but Herta Muller's books are quite disturbing, and, coming from the same former communist country, I can say I relate to some of the aspects presented. Definitely not a summer read, but still worth experiencing sometime :)

  8. I have only read Lake from your list. But I love the covers of every one of them. Since I'm also reading around the world this year, I'm glad to see your list. I'm going to have to see which ones I can get hold of.

  9. I love Banana Yoshimoto's books, particularly Kitchen. I haven't read The Lake yet, though, and yes, I do have her on the JlC8 line up.

    Bonjour Tristesse is remarkable in that a teenager wrote it. Yet she's as manipulative as Briony in Atonement (by McEwan) in my opinion. Both “heroines” left me wanting to more than slap them. I have no patience for girlish antics which destroy others.

  10. Oh Ally, I love love love The Robber Bride. I've read it many times, and could always read it again. Let's talk about Xenia when you're done, shall we? I'd value your opinion.

    I'm not quite sure I want to read Mueller, although communism is always an interesting idea to me. Especially since you've loved it. The closest I came to it was living in West Germany when the wall still separated it from East. So sad.

  11. There's nothing like a new Murakami book, and Colorless Tzukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage promises to be miraculous. I can't wait until we talk about it by September 12.

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