Projects

A couple of my recent projects

Tomorrow Pamplona by Jan van Mersbergen, Peirene Press, 2011

“Flawlessly translated from Dutch, this account of thwarted and self-destructive masculinity is as punchy and lean as a gym-honed welterweight” Adrian Turpin, Financial Times

“Tomorrow Pamplona is the fifth in Peirene’s series of short, literary novels in translation. This one passes the basic test: after a page you forget completely you are reading in translation. This independent publisher produces its small-format paper-backs beautifully. They are the ideal read on a trip to a European destination. This one’s a great start if you haven’t seen others in the series.” Michael Eaude, The Independent on Sunday

“Short fiction can still pack a punch, as demonstrated by the latest offering from Peirene Press, which specialises in publishing European short novels in translation.” Lucy Popescu, The Independent

“Translated with insight and empathy by Laura Watkinson, this is an intriguing and intricate gem of a novel. Van Mersbergen’s tightly controlled prose skilfully conveys the overriding sense of repressed emotion and sheer physicality that drive a compelling and complex story.” Pam Norfolk, IoMToday

A round-up of reviews of Tomorrow Pamplona from newspaper critics and bloggers.

Tomorrow Pamplona blog tour Author Jan van Mersbergen and I did thirteen ‘gigs’, touring literary blogs and answering questions about Tomorrow Pamplona.

I also did an interview about the book and about translation on Winstondad’s blog.

Heartsinger by Karlijn Stoffels, Arthur A. Levine Books, 2009

“Stoffels’s fresh Dutch voice, rendered fluidly and beautifully in Watkinson’s translation, weaves together traditional folktale elements to creates an original, haunting story of love that is magical unto itself. Heartfelt through and through.” Kirkus Reviews, starred review

“Dutch author Stoffels makes an impressive American debut . . . Readers who like love stories will savor the imaginative details.” — Publishers Weekly, starred review

“This Dutch import owes much to its translator, who fills the pages with vivid prose that gives the stories a cinematic quality and a lilting tone. A unique selection by a master storyteller.” — School Library Journal

“First published in the Netherlands, the novel is written with clarity and grace. … [T]his unusual novel offers readers limpid writing, strong storytelling, and the unblinking recognition of love in many forms.” — Booklist

“The plot works through a series of lyrical, interconnected stories that trace various kinds of love and sacrifice among people in a quasi-medieval fairy-tale landscape. Each story carries its own version of heartbreak and redemption, and the book brings overarching themes of appreciating life in all of its complexities of joy and sorrow and valuing people for who they are rather than rejecting them for not living up to our expectations. This thematic wisdom is communicated with a light touch in a variety of contexts, and readers who enjoy literary fairy tales will be charmed by this offering.” — Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books

Author Karlijn Stoffels and I took part in the Scholastic author brunch during the ALA conference in Chicago in 2009. Publishers Weekly printed this article about the brunch. We also participated in a panel discussion about Heartsinger and about books in translation: Found in Translation: How Heartsinger Made the Atlantic Crossing. It was great to see this write-up on Shelf Awareness.

The authors (and one translator!) line up after the Scholastic brunch. Look, that's Maggie Stiefvater!

I was actually asked to sign copies of Heartsinger, alongside author Karlijn Stoffels. A novel experience for me as a translator!