Monthly Archives: December 2012

  1. MAN Asian Review: Another Country


    December 29, 2012 by markstani

    Anjali Joseph’s ‘Another Country’ tells the story of twentysomething Leela, who drifts from Paris to London to Mumbai, doing nothing especially noteworthy along the way. I’m sure some people will like it, my mother-in-law for one. Personally, I can’t really see much at all to justify its selection for this year’s MAN Asian Prize longlist. Click image for more

  2. MAN Asian Review: Black Flower


    December 27, 2012 by markstani

    ‘Black Flower’ by Young-ha Kim, longlisted for the 2012 MAN Asian Prize, tells the little-known story of a boat-load of Koreans – soon to be effectively rendered stateless by Japanese annexation of their homeland – who set sail for a new life in Mexico at the turn of the 20th century. It’s an ambitious and worthy attempt, but it doesn’t quite hit the mark. Click image for more

  3. MAN Asian Review: Silent House


    December 23, 2012 by markstani

    Orhan Pamuk’s ‘Silent House’, originally published in Turkey in 1983 and translated into English this year by Robert Finn, is my latest review from this year’s MAN Asian Prize longlist. It tells the story of three generations of a family gathered in a crumbling mansion in the seaside resort of Cennethisar as tension between left and right mounts and the military coup of 1980 looms.Click image for more

  4. MAN Asian Review: Honour


    December 20, 2012 by markstani

    Elif Shafak is a big deal in Turkey, and on the evidence of this, her eighth novel, it’s not hard to see why. ‘Honour’ is a very accomplished novel about three generations of a Kurdish family, and the tragic clash of their traditional cultures with those of their new life in London. It’s my sixth review from this year’s MAN Asian Prize longlist – click the icon on the right to see more. Click image for more

  5. Book Of The Year 2012: Azazeel


    December 20, 2012 by markstani

    It will come as no surprise to anyone who’s had to put up with me ranting on about its excellence on both this blog and Twitter for the last ten months or so, but my book of the year for 2012 is ‘Azazeel’ by Youssef Ziedan – “a sexy, gory, fiery, thought-provoking masterpiece”. It’s a great book, and one I truly hope will help trigger a great new era for translated Arabic literature.Click image for more

  6. Books Of The Year #2: Chinaman


    December 19, 2012 by markstani

    You don’t have to like cricket to appreciate the riotous, bewildering brilliance of Shehan Karunatilaka’s debut novel: ostensibly a book about an ageing sportswriter’s attempts to track down one of the sport’s great lost talents, ‘Chinaman’ is in actual fact so much more than that – a meditation on cricket, Sri Lanka and life itself. Click image for more

  7. Books Of The Year #3: From The Mouth Of The Whale


    December 18, 2012 by markstani

    It seems an awful long time ago that I read ‘From The Mouth Of The Whale’, which lest we forget was voted the winner of the inaugural ‘Shadow’ Independent Foreign Fiction Prize. I’ve still barely read a better book since. Sjon has truly crafted a book like no other, bringing Icelandic history and the island’s savage beauty stunningly to life. Click image for more