2013 - roll call of Chinese-to-English fiction and poetry translations

By Nicky Harman, published December 13, 2013, 1:28a.m.

Here's this year's list, compiled by Nicky Harman and Helen Wang. Feel free to add any we've missed out:

Ten Loves by Zhang Yueran , translated by Jeremy Tiang , pub. Math Paper Press, Singapore

Island of Silence by Su Wei-chen , translated by Jeremy Tiang , pub. Ethos Books, Singapore

Durians Are Not The Only Fruit by Wong Yoon Wah , translated by Jeremy Tiang , pub. Epigram Books, Singapore

Tongwan City by Gao Jianqun, translated by Eric Mu, pub. CN times Books.

I can almost see the clouds of dust, poems by Yu Xiang, translated by Fiona Sze-Lorrain, pub. Zephyr Press and Chinese University Press of Hong Kong (bilingual)

Canyon in the body, poems by Lan Lan, translated by Fiona Sze-Lorrain, pub. Zephyr Press and Chinese University Press of Hong Kong (bilingual)

Wind says, poems by Bai Hua, translated by Fiona Sze-Lorrain, pub. Zephyr Press and Chinese University Press of Hong Kong (bilingual)

Other Cities, Other Lives by Chew Kok Chang , translated by Shelly Bryant , pub. Epigram Books, Singapore

Mr Ma and Son by Lao She , translated by William Dolby , pub. Penguin Modern Classics

Cat Country by Lao She , translated by William A Lyell , pub. Penguin Modern Classics

Irina’s Hat: New Short Stories From China by Authors and translators various , translated by ed. Josh Stenberg , pub. Merwin Asia

Last Quarter of the Moon by Chi Zijian , translated by Bruce Humes , pub. Harvill Secker

The Song of King Gesar by Alai , translated by Howard Goldblatt , pub. Canongate Books Ltd

Black Flame by Gerelchimeg Blackcrane , translated by Anna Holmwood , pub. Groundwood Books of Toronto, Canada (in association with Anansi Books)

For a Song and a Hundred Songs: A Poet’s Journey Through a Chinese Prison by Liao Yiwu , translated by Wenguang Huang , pub. New Harvest Books

The Matchmaker, The Apprentice and The Football Fan by Zhu Wen , translated by Julia Lovell , pub. Columbia University Press

The Earnest Mask by Xi Ni Er , translated by Howard Goldblatt & Sylvia Li-chun Lin , pub. Epigram Books, Singapore

The Man With The Compound Eyes, by Wu Ming-Yi, tr Darryl Sterk, pub. Harvill Secker

Every Rock a Universe: The Yellow Mountains and Chinese Travel Writing, writings by 17th century poet and artist Wang Hongdu, translated by Jonathan Chaves (Floating World Editions). Review forthcoming in Chinese Literature: Essays, Articles, Reviews.

Search for the Buried Bomber, by Xu Lei, tr. Gabriel Ascher, pub. AmazonCrossing

And here are some reviews we'd all like to read for our translations...

Mr Ma and Son: http://www.asianreviewofbooks.com/new/ ?ID=1588&utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitter

(see also "Lao She in London" http://www.hkupress.org/Common/Reader/ Products/ShowProduct.jsp?Pid=1&Version= 0&Cid=16&Charset=iso-8859-1&page=-1&key=9789888139606)

The Man with the Compound Eyes: http://www.theguardian.com/books/2013/sep/28/man-compound-eyes-wu-mingyi-review

Cat Country, - excellent review by @iandenisjohnson in @nyrbclassics http://www.nybooks.com/blogs/ nyrblog/2013/aug/26/china-when-cats-rule/

Last Quarter of the Moon: http://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/books/reviews/the-last-quarter-of-the-moon-by-chi-zijian-trs-by-bruce-humes-harvill-secker-1499-8478237.html

Song of King Gesar: http://www.walesartsreview.org/the-song-of-king-gesar-by-alai/

Black Flame: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/16073070-black-flame

For a Song and a Hundred Songs: http://www.nytimes.com/2013/04/10/books/liao-yiwus-new-book-is-for-a-song-and-a-hundred-songs.html?_r=0

and http://lareviewofbooks.org/review/for-a-song-liao-yiwus-prison-memoir

The Matchmaker, The Apprentice and The Football Fan: http://www.asianreviewofbooks.com/new/?ID=1488#! and http://www.prospectmagazine.co.uk/magazine/book-review-the-matchmaker-the-apprentie-and-the-football-fan-by-zhu-wen/#.Uqt5uZFhPwJ

The Earnest Mark: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/16106822-the-earnest-mask

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Comments

# 1.   

Well done, Nicky and Helen!

Eric, I'd like to see this put in table form and a permanent link to it inserted on the Home Page under "Explore". Good resource for agents and publishers.

There is one book that arguably belongs here: Tongwan City, the translation of Gao Jianqun's 《统万城》about Helian Bobo, the Xiongnu ruler who sought to unite China by force 16 centuries ago.

Published by CN Times Books, its Amazon launch date is Dec 31.

For readers who are interested specifically in writing about China's ethnic minorities, please visit Chinese Fiction in Translation: Novels/Novellas with “Ethnic” Theme.

This table includes info on a controversial Chinese novel translated by Nicky Harman that is due out in 2014 (and thus doesn't qualify for the 2013 list above), and several links to translations into other languages such as French, Dutch and Turkish.

Bruce, December 14, 2013, 4:50a.m.

# 2.   

Thanks, Bruce. "Tongwan City" by Gao Jianqun, was translated by Eric Mu, published by CN Times Books, 2013. http://t.co/uEhjsGGza and is getting excellent reviews on amazon

Helen Wang, December 14, 2013, 6:23p.m.

# 3.   

So far I don't see any poetry on this list. You're missing a number of Zephyr titles, at least. Lucas

Lucas Klein, December 15, 2013, 3:20a.m.

# 4.   

Thanks Lucas, and everyone. I did indeed omit Fiona Sze-Lorrain, many apologies. I've had another look at the Zephyr list but the others on that list are either pre-2013 or due out 2014. So here's Fiona: Wind Says poetry by Bai Hua (Author) , Fiona Sze-Lorrain (Translator) , Zephyr Press, 2013

Nicky Harman, December 15, 2013, 5:04a.m.

# 5.   

Here's a quick link to the Zephyr Press list http://www.zephyrpress.org/books_asian.php

Helen Wang, December 15, 2013, 5:12a.m.

# 6.   

Fiona Sze-Lorrain's translation of I Can Almost See the Clouds of Dust by Yu Xiang 宇向 also came out this year, as did her translation of Canyon in the Body by Lan Lan 藍藍. Lucas

Lucas Klein, December 15, 2013, 9:51a.m.

# 7.   

...now added. There are clearly discrepancies in publication dates, depending on the website.

 Nicky Harman, December 16, 2013, 10:21a.m.

# 8.   

Useful list, thanks!

For Chinese literature translated into Dutch there is a website listing everything that has ever been translated, called Verre Taal (www.unileiden.net/verretaal/, the website itself is in English). Hugely useful both for finding what has been translated and for finding what hasn't been (and therefore can still be done). It's a rather large project of course, but perhaps you/this website might be interested in looking into making something similar.

Annelous, December 29, 2013, 5:17a.m.

# 9.   

Thanks, Annelous! As far as I know, the best Chinese>English equivalent is the MCLC List http://mclc.osu.edu/rc/lit.htm .

Helen Wang, December 29, 2013, 5:59a.m.

# 10.   

Thanks, Annelous! As far as I know, the best Chinese>English equivalent is the MCLC List http://mclc.osu.edu/rc/lit.htm .

Helen Wang, December 29, 2013, 5:59a.m.

# 11.   

Thanks, Annelous! As far as I know, the best Chinese>English equivalent is the MCLC List http://mclc.osu.edu/rc/lit.htm .

Helen Wang, December 29, 2013, 5:59a.m.

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