My Favourite Translated Books


The Guest Cat


This is one of the most unlikeliest books I think I could ever read and love. IT'S ABOUT A CAT AND WE ALL KNOW DOGS RULE. But seriously, this book is brilliant, thought provoking and really really special.

It's only 130 pages long (and that's with a blank page in between each chapter). It's short. In fact I read most of it sat in the car in an Aldi car park (don't ask). And I think that's what I love about it. It's one of those books that you read and you instantly know you love - and the fact that it's been done in such a tiny amount of pages make it even more dazzlingly brilliant.

I fell in love with the characters and the writing is really quite exquisite. I mean, I might go as far as saying this is my favourite book. Full stop.

It might not seem like your type of thing and you might not even like it but please give this a go. You'll probably be surprised.

The Hen Who Dreamt She Could Fly

This book is magic. I mean, there's not a lot more to say other than READ IT. Again, it's really thin and really beautifully written and definitely worth the hour or so you'll spend reading it. It's based on a Korean folk tale and you can really tell that - that *vibe* still comes through in the translated version, so whoever did the actual translating did a brilliant job.

It's really simple, but that makes it even more brilliant. Less really is more here, and this book has a huge impact considering the fact it's only tiny.


Murakami. WOOO. Admittedly I've been meaning to read this trilogy for AGES and I'm so glad I have done - because it's brilliant. There's ups and downs, and there's a few dry bits that made me want to give up, but in the end it's worth it.

Books play quite a big part of this, and so does writing, and it celebrates them both in the most brilliant and wonderful way. I'm not sure if that's the experience others got (maybe not, because nobody ever seems to mention it) - but personally I loved it. There's a really slow burning mystery/romance surrounding the two main characters that doesn't really become clear until the end of book 2, and I LOVE THAT.

Food + writing + weird freaky mysterious stuff + the word "cock" being used a surprising amount of times + japanese = awesome.

Which translated books do you love?

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Fellside by M.R Carey - Too Slow and Not Enough Brain Guzzling Monsters

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The unmissable and highly anticipated new literary thriller from the author of the international phenomenon The Girl With All the Gifts.

Fellside is a maximum security prison on the edge of the Yorkshire Moors. It's not the kind of place you'd want to end up. But it's where Jess Moulson could be spending the rest of her life.

It's a place where even the walls whisper.

And one voice belongs to a little boy with a message for Jess.

Will she listen?

From the author of The Girl With All The Gifts (possibly one of the best novels I've read this year) comes Fellside (possibly one of the most annoying books I've ever read).

Annoying, that is, because I really wanted to love it. But I didn't.

First of all, let's just say that after The Girl With All The Gifts, I had some really quite enormous expectations - which might be where the problem lies. After reading his previous book in one (maybe two) sittings, it shocked me so much that I didn't like this that much.

Let's make this clear: this isn't the Girl With All The Gifts, and I don't have a problem with that. But it just wasn't comparable to his previous work at all - it just didn't live up to my expectations. Instead of a thrill heavy, action-y plot - what we got was a slow burner, something that seemed to be leading up to something, but never got there. I don't have a problem with slower books - far from it, but I just think there's a time and place. Lots of people talk about how this slow pace gave a ghostly feel - but I never got that. At times, the whole thing just felt incredibly tedious.

That said, this was brilliantly researched, just like Girl. However, here I don't feel like it worked that well. With Girl, it fitted in seamlessly - it turned your average zombie story into something so much more. Here, though, the text either seems to be either made up of ridiculously detailed drug taking (which I didn't particularly enjoy) and a few other storylines which, as far as I can tell, did nothing for the plot. At least I think the drug taking was research. Either that or the author has a serious addiction.

Basically, this just didn't grip me as much as I wanted it to. I wanted to love and enjoy this and fall in love with a new world and that just didn't happen.

However, in other news, THE GIRL WITH ALL THE GIFTS TRAILER HAS BEEN RELEASED! WHOOO! As far as I can tell, it seems to follow the basic storyline pretty closely, and all the actors seem to fit the parts just as I imagined! Feast your eyes here:

Have you read Fellside? What about Girl? What did you think?

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