Voracious reader and DPhil candidate blogs about books and scholarly life.
The first Modiano translation has appeared since the announcement that he had won this year’s Nobel Prize in Literature. My recommendation? Don’t read more than one work by Modiano.
When Patrick Modiano’s Nobel Prize for Literature was announced in October, none of his books were in print in English. Only a fraction of his books had been translated at all over the past few decades: Ring Roads and Villa Triste (which I’ve previously discussed here) were translated in the 1970s. Yale University Press was the first, and apparently the only, English-language publisher to jump on the Nobel bandwagon, seeing an opportunity for new translations. Suspended Sentences, a collection of three novellas translated by Mark Polizotti, was published in November – an apparently rapidly produced translation that nonetheless is better than its 1970s predecessors.
Suspended Sentences is a collection of three slightly more recent novellas, which are Modiano’s narrative form of choice: Afterimage (Chien de printemps, 1993), Suspended Sentences (Reminse de peine, 1988), and Flowers of Ruin (Fleurs de ruine, 1991). Afterimage
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