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Belletrista - A site promoting translated women authored literature from around the world

New & Notable
Once again, we at Belletrista have sifted through hundreds of pages of publisher catalogs from all over the world to bring our readers a variety of interesting international reading. The titles presented on these pages are either new publications or otherwise notable in some way, and we have attempted to organize them rather unscientifically into regions. We at Belletrista hope you'll find more than a few delicious titles here (I know we do!) Happy reading!


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Rosemund J Handler

Tsamma Season is set at the turn of the last century. An intrepid couple spurn their former lives to take on the challenge of building a home in the Kalahari Desert. The family’s story is told by their precocious daughter, Emma. Handler’s prose vividly evokes the limitless horizons and rugged beauty of the Kalahari as she explores the themes of love and loss of love,challenge and betrayal.

Penguin (South Africa), paperback, 9780143025849

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BY Siba Al-Harez
Translated from the Arabic by Marilyn Booth

A young university student in Saudi Arabia has no contact with men outside her family, so when the charming Dai seduces her, her feelings of guilt are overwhelmed by the need for intimacy. Her girlfriend Dai introduces her to a world of lesbian parties and love affairs, and it's here that she meets Darin and falls in love for the first time.

Telegram Books, paperback, 9781846590429

Valerie Tagwira

Through the various and complex lives of Onai Moyo, a market woman and responsible mother of three children, and her best friend Katy Nguni, a vendor and black-market currency dealer - we are given an insight into the challenges that face those who survive only by their wits, their labour and their mutual support.

Weaver Press (Zimbabwe), paperback, 9781779220639

Malakai Joya

Lauded as the "most famous woman in Afghanistan," Malakai Joya made worldwide headlines in 2003 when she publicly denounced her country's warlords at a constitutional assembly in Kabul. Two years later, at the age of twenty-seven, she was elected as the youngest ever member of the Afghan parliament. Beginning with her childhood as a refugee in Iran and Pakistan, this book describes Joya's harrowing experiences as a teacher in underground girls' schools during the Taliban's reign, as well as her work establishing an orphanage and free clinic in her impoverished home province. A Woman Among Warlords is an inspiring account of a young woman committed to making a difference in the world, no matter the cost.

Scribner (US), hardcover, 9781439109465 (Memoir)

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By Mariatu Kamara , Susan McClelland

In this gripping and heartbreaking true story of survival during war in Sierra Leone, Mariatu Kamara shares with readers the details of a brutal attack upon her when she was twelve in which she lost both hands, its aftermath and her eventual arrival in Toronto. There she began to pull together the pieces of her broken life with courage, astonishing resilience and hope. Now twenty-two, Mariatu is a UN representative.

Bloomsbury (UK), paperback, 9781408805138 (November)
Annick Press, paperback, 9781554511587

Helen Benedict

In 1960, when her husband, a British diplomat, is posted to the remote Seychelle Islands in the Indian Ocean, Penelope is less than thrilled. When he falls under the spell of a local beauty, Penelope turns to black magic to save her marriage. Benedict's acerbic wit and lush descriptions serve up a page-turner brimming with jealousy, sex, and witchcraft in a darkly exotic Eden. Helen Benedict is a US author of five novels and four nonfiction books.

Soho Press (US), hardcover, 9781569476024 (November)

Isabelle Eberhardt
Translated from the French and with a preface by Paul Bowles

This is a new release of Eberhardt's classic, a selection of her best stories and vignettes of African life. Daughter of a Russian Nihilist who forbade her any contact with society, dressed her as a man and insisted her education consisted of hard physical labour, Isabelle Eberhardt, perhaps unsurprisingly, ran away to North Africa in 1897, aged twenty. There she travelled through the Sahara and became one of the few white women ever to have been initiated into Sufism. She also produced a small but exceptional body of writing. Eberhardt was killed in a flash flood at the age of twenty-seven.

Peter Owen, paperback, 9780720613384

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Margie Orford

When a member of South African elite police Gang Unit is suspected in the abduction of his own daughter, he turns to criminal profilier Dr. Clare Hart. Their desperate search for the missing child unravels a tangled web of deception and danger that puts all of their lives at terrible risk.

Jonathan Ball, paperback, 9781868423262