& Books Without Borders Bookclub 

Welcome to, your destination-point for fans of foreign fiction.We look at the latest international fiction news, brand new foreign fiction and for the serious foreign fiction aficionados amongst you, review trending fiction as well. Oh and for bookworms, we also give a sneak preview of our next featured book for our Books Without Borders  Book Club.

       Trending News Worth Taking Note

Novel nEWS

Author Ellen Ferrentes gets her column in the Guardian Newspaper. (Check trending details)

Book Awards 

South Asian Author Sheena Kayall wins award with her novel (Check out Trending news section).

BWBB Reviews

The Books Without Borders Bookclub recently reviewed The Ministry of Utmost Happiness.

Trending Foreign Fiction News and Reviews


Shafak and Levy among Goldsmiths Prize judges

Leading Turkish novelist Elif Shafak and novelist and poet Deborah Levy are among those judging the 2018 Goldsmiths Prize.

Veteran literary critic Nicholas Lezard, and writer, research professor of Creative Writing at Goldsmiths, and chair of judges, Adam Mars-Jones will complete the judging panel.

The £10,000 Goldsmiths Prize rewards fiction at its "most novel". Mars-Jones said: “I'm delighted to be chairing the panel of judges in the sixth year of the prize. I look forward to a season of extreme reading."

The award will be open for submissions on 26th January and close on 23rd March. A six-book shortlis will be announced on 14th November and the winner will be announced at a ceremony in London on the 14th November.


Publisher To Bring Out Brand New French Fiction

Headline has acquired How to Find Love in the Little Things by French author Virginie Grimaldi, translated by Adriana Hunter.

The book is pitched as a "funny, moving and ultimately uplifting" read about a young woman who abandons her successful job and life in Paris following the sudden death of her father - leading her to find love, meaning and friendship in the most unlikely of places.

Its author, Grimaldi, has been heralded "a rising star on the commercial French writing scene" and was recently lauded by Livres Hebdo as "one of French fiction's powerful new voices".

How to Find Love in the Little Things is the author’s first novel to be published in English (translated by Hunter) and is scheduled for release by Headline Review in paperback and e-book in summer 2018. 


The Books Without Borders Bookclub Reviewed Arundhathi Roy`s The Ministry of Utmost Happiness.

The Books Without Borders Bookclub  recently reviewed Arundhati Roy`s new novel The Ministry of Utmost Happiness. To join and meet other fans of international fiction, join now for the next bookclub review of the The White Book by Hand Kang. 


Kalayil lands Writers’ Guild Award

Women have dominated the winners' list at the Writers’ Guild Awards, with debut novelist Sheena Kalayil honoured along with British playwright Caryl Churchill.

Altogether nine of the 15 awards -run by the Writers’ Guild of Great Britain (WGGB) - went to women. 

The gong for Best First Novel went to Manchester-based Kalayil for The Bureau of Second Chances (Birlinn General), based on a widower returning to his native India. 


Ellen Ferante Gets Column in Gaurdian

Elena Ferrante is to write a weekly newspaper column for the Guardian’s new look Weekend magazine starting on Saturday (20th January).

The regular column will cover the pseudonymous Italian novelist’s thoughts “on life, love, childhood, ageing, the female experience and everything in between”. Her inaugural column will focus on her first love.

According to a Guardian report, the author of the bestselling Neapolitan series said she was “attracted to the possibility of testing myself” with a regular column describing the experience “a bold, anxious exercise in writing”. The pieces will be translated by Ferrante’s regular collaborator Ann Goldstein.

The reclusive Italian author’s four-part series, published by Europa Editions, follows Elena Greco and her friend Raffaella Cerullo, who she has always called Lila, in the first year of primary school in 1950. Set against a dangerous and vibrant Naples, the story spans 60 years of their lives as Elena tries to unravel the mystery of her friend. 

The announcement follows the launch of the Guardian in tabloid format on Monday (15th January). In addition to the refreshed Weekend magazine, the paper will also include the Review section revamped as a “beautiful and stylish books magazine”. Other sections include food magazine, Feast, as well as Travel and the listings supplement Guide.

Melissa Denes, editor of Weekend, revealed she was "thrilled to be working with Elena Ferrante on her first newspaper column” and described it as “a new adventure for her and for Guardian Weekend magazine.”

“Every week, she will be writing a personal piece, covering subjects from sex to ageing to the things that make her laugh. I can't wait to see where she will take us," Denes said.

Weekend has been redesigned as part of the Guardian’s move to tabloid format with the first new look issue appearing on Saturday (20th January).

Inaugural First Translation Prize shortlist revealed

The Translators' Association First Translation Prize, set up by writer and translator Daniel Hahn, has revealed its inaugural shortlist.

Among those in the running for the accolade, which celebrates new talent, new voices, skill and risk-taking, are a graphic novel, four works of fiction and one non-fiction book. The translations span Arabic and French to Polish, Russian and Thai by new literary translators.

Eve Out of Her Ruins by Ananda Devi (Les Fugitives), translated from the French by Jeffrey Zuckerman, edited by Cécile Menon and Angeline Rothermundt, has made the cut. It is described as "a beautiful thing, undeniably powerful", by the judges. Second-hand Time, "a work of extraordinary, sustained virtuosity" by Svetlana Alexievich, translated from the Russian by Bela Shayevich, edited by Jacques Testard (Fitzcarraldo Editions) is also in the running, along with "memorable gem" Swallowing Mercury by Wioletta Greg, translated from the Polish by Eliza Marciniak, edited by Max Porter and Ka Bradley (Portobello Books).

Rounding out the shortlist are The Sad Part Was, an "inventive, experimental, playful and ironical" title by Prabda Yoon, translated from the Thai by Mui Poopoksakul, edited by Deborah Smith (Tilted Axis Press), The Queue, "a slow but powerful burn of a novel" by Basma Abdel Aziz, translated from the Arabic by Elisabeth Jaquette, edited by Sal Robinson, Taylor Sperry and Željka Marošević (Melville House), and graphic novel Notes on a Thesis by Tiphaine Rivière, translated from the French by Francesca Barrie, edited by Clare Bullock (Jonathan Cape), which was selected by the judges for its "hilariously accurate depiction" of the joys, grustrations and absurdities of academic life.

The TA First Translation Prize was founded last year by translator Hahn (pictured) with his share of the winnings from the International Dublin Literary Award. The aim of the award is to recognise new talent in the translation profession – an arena which Hahn said at the time "remains a difficult one for newcomers to break into". It is also designed to reward editors who take a chance on a debut translator and then work with them to improve their skills.

Hahn said the prize was established as a celebration of "those people who want to expand what readers can read, by looking outwards – at a time when our culture (political and otherwise) seems fixated on doing the opposite".

The winning work will be announced at the Society of Authors’ Translation Prizes ceremony at The British Library on 1st March, with the prize fund of £2,000 to be shared equally between the translator and their editor(s).

The prize is judged this year by Rosalind Harvey, Bill Swainson and Daniel Hahn, and has been generously supported by The British Council.

Manbooker Shortlisted Author Chigozie Obioma New Novel Follow up 

  Fans of Chigozie Obioma, author of the Man Booker-shortlisted debut The Fishermen (Pushkin Press) can expect a follow-up to his Manbooker Prize Shortlisted novel The Fisherman.

His new novel an Orchestra of Minorities is expected to be out in 2019 and is about the life of a troubled young poultry farmer who sacrifices everything to win the woman he loves. According an article in The Bookseller, the publishers Little Brown described the novel as a modern epic of Igbo civilisation, dealing with myth, spirituality, life, death,obsession and ownership.It canalso be read as parable about civilisation lurching towards modernity, sometimes the cost of abandoning the wisdom of elders."


Obioma said: "I'm thrilled at the prospect of making this book with Ailah and the folks at Little, Brown, UK. Their enthusiasm for An Orchestra of Minorities and The Fishermen has been great, and I couldn't feel more satisfied to be working with such a wonderful editor in Ailah. It is pleasing that she will be working with Judy Clain, also at Little, Brown US, in a collaboration I'm convinced will yield great results."


 Croation editor Antonija LetinicI interview author Ece Temelkuran on the  Relationship between  politics and writing.

Study Reveals "Shockingly Low" Number of BAME Authors In UK Top 500 2016 Best Sellers 

A new study by the Bookseller magazine has revealed a “shockingly low” number of books by British BAME (black, asian and minority ethnic) authors in the top 500 titles of the year to date.

The study uncovered the fact that among the top 100 bestselling titles for the year to date, there was just one British BAME author in the list – Kazuo Ishiguro with his novel The Buried Giant, which had sold just over 100,000 copies to make 59th place with the next UK BAME author Dorothy Koomson, in 156th place with the commercial novel That Girl from Nowhere.

Bookseller’s charts editor Kiera O’Brien, commented "Of the top 500 titles for 2016, 343 were written by UK authors, of which 1.7% were penned by BAME Brits. That drops to 1.2% when extrapolated to the top 500. Considering the BAME population of England and Wales is around 15%, this is shockingly low,”  


However the study did have some positive news - while there were just a paltry three UK BAME authors in the top 300, and six in the top 500, the Bookseller revealed that 2016’s charts were actually more diverse than in previous years.

Ece Temelkuram

Q&A event with Turkish author Ece Temelkuran

Turkish author Ece Temelkuran releases her new novel Women Who Blow On Knots. Something of a firebrand who is never afraid of court controversy. We get the inside track on the meaning of the title and what is the definition of home to this nomadic author.

Hiromi Kawakami

Japanese author

In an event organised by Japan Foundation and Foyles Bookshop, fans were able to meet Japanese author Hiromi Kawakami and discuss her novels including Strange Weather In Tokyo. Why is there always a food featured in the novels ? What kind of characters does she enjoy writing about ? Tell me more

Author Elif Shafak 

Popular Turkish Author

Prominent foreign fiction authors including popular Turkish author Elif Shafak came together at a recent event to debate the changing perceptions of women, treating us to some real revelations on the night. (Elif Shafak photo inset) Tell me more

Author David Lagercrantz

Meet The Author Event

With the launch of the fourth addition to the Stieg Larsson trilogy The Girl In the Spiders Web, crime fiction aficionados have finally sated their anxiety levels. It`s the trilogy that globally set alight interest in Nordic Noir and arguably reinvigorated the genre, selling over 80 million copies to date. Tell Me More

Fuminori Nakamura 

Popular Japanese Noir Author

Fuminori Nakamura is considered one of the leading crime writers in Japan and is called the new master of ‘Japanese Noir’. Its been said that his works examine of some of the darker element of Japanese society and have netted him many awards such as the Akutagawa prize and the Kenzaburo Oe Prize, Japan’s most prestigious literary award. Tell Me More

Jamaican Novelists For Your Reading

Waiting In Vain Colin Channer, Once referred to as ‘Bob Marley with a Pen’, after naming his first two novels after Marley tunes: Waiting in Vain and Satisfy my Soul. He has also become an influential figure within the Caribbean literary world because of his work with the Calabash International Literary Festival Trust..

True History of Paradise
A writer who has helped define Jamaican literature for a new generation, Margaret Cezair-Thompson has won numerous accolades during her career for her perspicacious depictions of Jamaican history and culture.
Her first novel The True History of Paradise follows Jean Landing as she flees her native Jamaica for the USA, and suffers from the homesickness and nostalgia experienced by all exiles. It was shortlisted for the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award in 2000. Cezair-Thompson's second novel, The Pirate's Daughter is an attempt to depict colonial Jamaica, and was awarded the Essence Literary Award for Fiction 2008.

A unique voice in Jamaican literature, Kerry Young’s works look at the island’s multicultural society, and particularly focus on the Chinese community amongst which Young herself was raised. Young is the daughter of a Chinese father and a mother of mixed Chinese-African heritage who came to Britain from Jamaica as a young woman

In Chinelo Okparanta’s new novel Under the Udala Trees, a chance meeting between Ijeoma, a Christian Igbo, and Amina, a Muslim Hausa, begins a friendship that turns quickly to passion. “This was the beginning,” Okparanta writes. “Our bodies being touched by the fire that was each other’s flesh … Tingly and good and like everything perfect in the world.”

'Nigeria is haunted by Biafran war'

Chinua Achebe's new memoir suggests that his country is still suffering from a refusal to face up to its insalubrious history, says Ike Anya

Read more

Ijeoma’s secure, stable childhood has already unravelled by then. The novel is set in 1968, one year into the Biafran conflict, and Ijeoma’s world is beset by “the ruckus of armored cars and shelling machines, bomber planes and their loud engines sending shock waves through our ears”. Things grow worse. Her father, “a man who liked to wallow in his thoughts”, becomes so consumed by sorrow for his massacred people that he refuses to seek refuge during an air raid over their town of Ojoto. When Ijeoma and her mother Adaora emerge from a nearby bunker, they discover his blood-soaked body.


Meera Syal immerses us in the tale of a rarely spoken subject: surrogacy. We are introduced to a forty-something has been mother trying for her second child. Shyama’s character reminds the reader that life isn’t always kind; escaping a troublesome marriage when her first born was young and now living opposite her ageing parents. Read More

A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara international fiction
US Novelist Hnaya Yanagihara with her novel A Little Life has had praise steeped on her by the critics and is already now one of the Manbooker prize nominees. Read more

Get Trending news and events through our web and latest reviews through our blog. Subscribe to our newsletter as well.

Get Our Free e-newsletter

Polish Crime Fiction  

A Devil Under The Skin by Polish Crime Fictiomn Author Anya Lipska
Polish Crime Fiction writer Anya Lipska delivers the third in the series of her crime fiction series featuring the unofficial fixer and anti hero januska. 

New to Lipska ?  Read the review of her first novel . Read More


Love Foreign Fiction ? 
Why not join our London based Books Without Borders  Bookclub ! ?
Meet like-minded foreign fiction fans and get to review great foreign fiction including South Asian, and Scandinavian past and present. Part of the 140 character  brigade ? Find us on twitter sphere on @globookss.  Email for more details.