Literary roundup: Balabán, Barnás and books

For their series “The Czech Books You Must Read”, Czech Radio has an interview with my B O D Y co-editor Jan Zikmund from the Czech Literary Centre on Jan Balabán, whose novel Where Was the Angel Going? was recently published by Glagoslav Publications in a translation by Charles S. Kraszewski. The same publisher/translator combo released Balabán’s 2004 story collection Maybe We’re Leaving in 2018. Zikmund talks about the uniqueness of the Czech industrial city of Ostrava, where much of the writer’s work is set, of the religious element in his work and of how little known he is for being one of the best post-1990 Czech writers.

Read a short story by Balabán in B O D Y here

Read a review of Maybe We’re Leaving in B O D Y here

At Hungarian Literature Online there is an interview with Ferenc Barnás, author of The Parasite, by the novel’s translator Paul Olchváry. They cover the debate the novel’s publication initially provoked in Hungary, on what degree the novel’s concerns are universal and perhaps on the healing powers of art. It’s a deep, wide-ranging interview and makes the novel sound very intriguing. The Parasite is being published by Seagull Books.

At Bookbeat there is an interview with Wakefield Press publisher Marc Lowenthal. They discuss the really unique range of avant-garde writers they’ve published over the past decade, what makes a Wakefield writer (mostly deceased, but not a requirement), reader (these should be alive) and Lowenthal mentions a host of other independent publishers of lit in translation.

Read from A Dilemma by Joris-Karl Huysmans from Wakefield Press in B O D Y here

Photo – Jan Balabán

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Categories: Interviews

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