13 Works Of Fiction In Translation To Read In 2017

On Wednesday, the internet got its first look at the longlist for the Man Booker International Prize longlist for 2017. The 13 titles on the Man Booker International Prize longlist make up just over 10 percent of the 126 novels considered by this year's judges. The judges will trim the longlist to six books on Apr. 20, and a single winner will be announced on June 14 at London's Victoria & Albert Museum.

The Man Booker International Prize honors a single work of fiction that has been translated into English and published in the U.K. over the previous year. A total cash prize of £50,000 is given to the author and translator of the chosen book. In 2016, South Korean author Han Kang and translator Deborah Smith took home the Man Booker International Prize for Han's novel, The Vegetarian.

The panel of judges for the 2017 Man Booker International Prize features a number of award-winning authors U.S. book nerds will recognize by name, including: Daniel Hahn (The Tower Menagerie), Elif Shafak (The Bastard of Istanbul), Chika Unigwe (Black Messiah), and Helen Mort (No Map Could Show Them). Edinburgh International Book Festival Director Nick Barley is the 2017 panel chair.

Check out the 13 books on the Man Booker International Prize longlist below:


'Compass' by Mathias Énard, translated by Charlotte Mandell (France)

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Mathias Énard’s Prix Goncourt-winning novel, Compass, is a reflection on the relationship between Europe and the Middle East.


'Swallowing Mercury' by Wioletta Greg, translated by Eliza Marciniak (Poland)

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This short bildungsroman set in communist Poland explores the most unspeakable aspects of village life.


'A Horse Walks Into a Bar' by David Grossman, translated by Jessica Cohen (Israel)

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In A Horse Walks into a Bar, an Israeli stand-up comic unleashes years of pain and regret on an unsuspecting audience.


'War and Turpentine' by Stefan Hertmans, translated by David McKay (Belgium)

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In Stefan Hertmans' War and Turpentine, a writer reconstructs his late grandfather's life via the dead man's paintings and papers.


'The Unseen' by Roy Jacobsen, translated by Don Bartlett and Don Shaw (Norway)

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In Roy Jacobsen's acclaimed novel, a young woman must leave her family's island namesake to work on the Norwegian mainland.


'The Traitor's Niche' by Ismail Kadare, translated by John Hodgson (Albania)

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Available for the first time in English, Ismail Kadare's 1978 novel centers on an octogenarian rebelling against a repressive sultan in the 1820s Ottoman Empire.


'Fish Have No Feet' by Jón Kalman Stefánsson, translated by Phil Roughton (Iceland)

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On a trip home from Denmark, a middle-aged writer reflects on his Icleandic youth in this new novel from The Heart of Man author Jón Kalman Stefánsson.


'The Explosion Chronicles' by Yan Lianke, translated by Carlos Rojas (China)

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This satirical novel centers on the Kong brothers and their attempt to monopolize power and authority in the tiny mountain village of Explosion.


'Black Moses' by Alain Mabanckou, translated by Helen Stevenson (France)

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A tragicomedic novel set in the People's Republic of Congo in the 1970s, Black Moses follows three orphans who escape to the city and form a street gang.


'Bricks and Mortar' by Clemens Meyer, translated by Katy Derbyshire (Germany)

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According to publisher's copy, Clemens Meyer's story of prostitution in what was formerly communist East Germany is reminiscent of Takeshi Miike and David Lynch.


'Mirror, Shoulder, Signal' by Dorthe Nors, translated by Misha Hoekstra (Denmark)

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Unexpectedly single at fortysomething, Sonja attempts to reinvent herself by taking up meditation and learning to drive, but nothing in her new life seems to be going quite as she planned it.


'Judas' by Amos Oz, translated by Nicholas de Lange (Israel)

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Jewish scholars debate the meaning of Christianity's central opposing figures in Amos Oz's Judas.


'Fever Dream' by Samanta Schweblin, translated by Megan McDowell (Argentina)

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The first of Samanta Schweblin's novels to be translated into English, Fever Dream is a thriller framed by one woman's deathbed narration.