On Translation and The Little Prince

Antoine de Saint-Exupéry wrote the brilliant novella, The Little Prince in 1943. Originally written in French, it’s become the most translated book from its original language, into over 250 different distinct languages and dialects. But part of the charm of The Little Prince are its original watercolour illustrations by Saint-Exupéry. Those illustrations require no translation, as the old saying of “a picture is worth a thousand words” holds true in this case. Despite illustrations needing no translation, there is […] Read More

When She Woke – Hillary Jordan

When She Woke by Hillary Jordan is probably one of the ‘hottest’ books being hand-sold these days. Published by Algonquin after a large number of other traditional publishers passed on the book [To my great surprise and pleasure, the author, Hillary Jordan has corrected me on this part – other publishers passed over Mudbound, but rather, Algonquin bought When She Woke upon first showing. Whoever was responsible for this acquisition should be promoted at Algonquin.], it addresses one of the […] Read More

Ready Player One – Ernest Cline

Ready Player One was a novel that I wanted to read from the second I heard about its premise. A futuristic apocalyptic society where the common escape from reality is a massively multiplayer online game that uses haptic equipment and virtual reality? And to boot, it focuses on retro video games and movies from the 1980s? Where do I sign up!?! Needless to say from my brief capsule overview above, I was excited about this […] Read More

Some Things That Meant The World To Me – Joshua Mohr

Joshua Mohr’s stunning debut novel explores the life of its central figure, a man called Rhonda. I read the entire novel knowing that Rhonda was suffering from ‘depersonalization’, but didn’t know what that meant medically. By the end I thought I had figured out what that malady was – a psychological affliction that was the result of Rhonda’s extremely warped upbringing at the hands of his alcoholic mother and her abusive boyfriend, Letch. The psychological […] Read More

Swamplandia! – Karen Russell

A literary whirlwind, Swamplandia! was on my ‘to-read’ list ever since Stephen King gave it high praise in one of his last few columns for Entertainment Weekly. It landed on his ‘10 Best Books of 2010‘ article, even though the novel wasn’t available for mass consumption until February 2011. Even though the story itself doesn’t really make any sense, but then again most great stories don’t really make any sense – they lend you an […] Read More

Open – Andre Agassi

Andre Agassi was the first male tennis player to complete the Golden Slam (win all four majors: Australian, French, Wimbledon, and the US Open, along with an Olympic gold medal). During the late 1980s and early 1990s, Agassi was best known for his flamboyant dress and the hair, which he translated into an advertising campaign with Canon using the tagline, “Image is Everything”. In later years, he was considered the best returner in tennis history […] Read More