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Greek authors enter the UK books market February 1, 2007

Posted by grhomeboy in Books Life, Books Life Greek.

Hatziyiannidis made The Independent’s long list.

The English-language book market is notoriously hard to crack, with works in translation representing less than 3 percent of total output, but that hasn’t stopped some young Greek authors from making their presence felt, daily Kathimerini reports.

On January 19, British daily The Independent announced the long list for its prestigious Foreign Fiction Prize. There, among the 20 titles by well-known writers including Ismail Kadare, Jose Saramago and Elif Shafak, was “Four Walls” by Vangelis Hatziyiannidis. “I tesseris toichoi” (The Four Walls) was published by To Rodakio in 2001, and the English translation by Anne-Marie Stanton-Ife was published last year in English by Marion Boyars.

The 10,000-pound award is divided equally between author and translator. The short list will be announced in early March. The long list, selected from 86 titles submitted, “has never looked broader or richer,” wrote Independent literary editor Boyd Tonkin. The book has already had international success, winning the 2004 Laure Bataille Award for the best foreign book and best translation of the year. It has also received good reviews in Britain, Catheryn Kilgarriff of Marion Boyars said.

Also in the news is Alexis Stamatis, whose novel “Bar Flaubert,” originally published by Kedros in 2000, has just come out, translated into English by David Connolly, from Arcadia Press, which also published his book “The Seventh Elephant” in 2000. “Bar Flaubert” has also been translated into Italian, French, and Spanish and is due out soon in Serbian and Russian. Stamatis has been invited to present his novel at the Edinburgh International Book Festival in August. Stamatis’s ‘Bar Flaubert’ is also available in English.

“It’s a strong novel and we are confident of good review coverage,” Gary Pulsifer of Arcadia said. “It’s of today and set not only in Greece, in Athens and Arcadia, but also in Florence and Berlin. I think ‘Bar Flaubert’ will have wide appeal to an international, cosmopolitan readership.”

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