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Songs for the Flames by Juan Gabriel Vásquez (transl. Anne MacLean): Stories within stories

Given that Juan Gabriel Vásquez has not only won the prestigious International Dublin Literary Award but has also been shortlisted for the Man Booker International Prize, together with his translator Anne MacLean, I feel I really should have read something by him before now. Songs for the Flames is his first short story collection for …

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Six Degrees of Separation – From The Turn of the Screw to Howard’s End Is on the Landing

Six Degrees of Separation is a meme hosted by Kate over at Books Are My Favourite and Best. It works like this: each month a book is chosen as a starting point and linked to six others to form a chain. A book doesn’t need to be connected to all the titles on the list, …

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Daughters by Lucy Fricke (transl. Sinéad Crowe): Friends forever 

Lucy Fricke’s Daughters is the second V&Q Books launch title I’ve reviewed in a week. Each is very different from the other, yet both are concerned with families and how they shape us. Whereas Sandra Hoffmann’s Paula was a moving piece of cathartic autofiction, Daughters is a road novel with a sharply comic edge which …

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Paula by Sandra Hoffmann (transl. Katy Derbyshire): The power of silence

Sandra Hoffmann’s Paula is one of the launch titles for V&Q Books who specialise in translated German fiction. In her translator’s note Katy Derbyshire explains that so impressed was she with Hoffmann’s book that, unable to find a British publisher for her translation, she decided to approach a German press with a view to setting …

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