SOLO by Rana Dasgupta

How do you write about failure?

Early in this book, its protagonist, Ulrich, a young Bulgarian man studying chemistry in Berlin, is walking down a corridor after Albert Einstein, who drops a sheaf of papers. When he picks them up and runs after the great man, Einstein thanks him by saying “I would be nothing without you.” Much later in life, after his own career has been a failure by all outward measures, and life has almost been crushed out of him by Soviet austerity, Ulrich comes to learn more about Einstein and his callousness to some of those closest to him, and realizes that genius feeds off the failure of others.

March 6, 2011 · Judi Clark · No Comments
Tags: , ,  · Posted in: Balkans, Commonwealth Prize, Literary, World Lit, y Award Winning Author

UNDER FISHBONE CLOUDS by Sam Meekings

If UNDER FISHBONE CLOUDS doesn’t attain the high readership it deserves, there is no justice. It’s quite simply one of the most lavishly imagined, masterfully researched, exquisitely written contemporary novels I’ve read. And if that sounds as if I’m gushing…well, it’s probably because I am.

December 7, 2010 · Judi Clark · One Comment
Tags: , , , , , , ,  · Posted in: 2010 Favorites, China, Facing History, Family Matters, World Lit

BENEATH THE LION’S GAZE by Maaza Mengiste

Emperor Haile Selassie ruled Ethiopia for more than four decades. Stories about him are legendary even today. Debut author Maaza Mengiste’s book BENEATH THE LION’S GAZE is set during a period of history when the emperor is just on his way out; it takes place over a few years around 1974.

January 12, 2010 · Judi Clark · No Comments
Tags: , , , ,  · Posted in: Africa, Debut Novel, Facing History, World Lit