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

New & Notable
In these exciting pages we reveal a sample of New and Notable publications by women that have been carefully selected after we have pored over hundreds of entries in publishers catalogs from all over the world. Our aim is to bring you the most alluring reads from around the globe, so that you may further enjoy your armchair travels from the comfort of your home. This time, we've added significantly more covers and we've increased the length of the synopses given. All of us at Belletrista take pleasure in presenting these books to you in the hope that you will enjoy browsing through them as much as we have enjoyed selecting them. Go ahead; embark on an exhilarating reading voyage!


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Nadifa Mohamid

Aden, 1935; a city vibrant, alive, and full of hidden dangers. And home to Jama, a ten year-old boy. But then his mother dies unexpectedly and he finds himself alone in the world. Jama is forced home to his native Somalia, the land of his nomadic ancestors. War is on the horizon and the fascist Italian forces who control parts of east Africa are preparing for battle. Yet Jama cannot rest until he discovers whether his father, who has been absent from his life since he was a baby, is alive somewhere. And so begins an epic journey.... This story of one boy's long walk to freedom is also the story of how the Second World War affected Africa and its people; a story of displacement and family.

HarperCollins, paperback, 9780007315741 (January) AUS & NZ (March)

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Nathacha Appanah
Translated from the French by Geoffrey Strachan

In the remote forests of Madagascar, young Raj is almost oblivious of the Second World War raging beyond his tiny exotic island. With only his mother for company while his father works as a prison guard, solitary ever since his brothers died years ago, Raj thinks only of making friends. One day, the far-away world comes to Madagascar, and Raj meets David, a Jew exiled from his home in Europe and imprisoned in the camp where Raj's father works. David becomes the friend that he has always longed for, a brother to replace those he has lost. Raj knows that he must help David to escape. As they flee through sub-tropical landscapes and devastating storms, the boys battle hunger and malaria - and forge a friendship only death can destroy. The Last Brother is a powerful, poetic novel that sheds new light on a little-explored aspect of 20th-century history.

Quercus Publishing, hardcover, 9781847246417

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Susan Abulhawa

Forcibly removed from the ancient village of Ein Hod by the newly formed state of Israel in 1948, the Abulhejas are moved into the Jenin refugee camp. There, exiled from his beloved olive groves, the family patriarch languishes of a broken heart, his eldest son fathers a family and falls victim to an Israeli bullet, and his grandchildren struggle against tragedy toward freedom, peace, and home. This is the Palestinian story, told as never before, through four generations of a single family.

Bloomsbury, paperback, 9781608190461 (February)

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Adaobi Tricia Nwaubani

You've seen or heard about the Nigerian email scams, the ones that offer you a huge percentage of a fortune if you'll just help out the sender who is stuck in some unfortunate circumstance... There are real people behind these scams, called 419ers, a reference to Nigeria's legal code. And there are real victims of these scams. Even with increased regulations in Nigeria and heightened awareness around the world, 419 maintains a stronghold on Nigeria and its economy; revenue generated from 419 still accounts for a significant portion of Nigeria's economy, second only to revenue from oil.

Nigerian author Adaobi Tricia Nwaubani becomes the first writer to explore the culture of 419 through fiction in her novel. Nwaubani's knowledge of the phenomenon makes her an expert on the subject: she knows 419ers and former 419ers personally and can discuss the cultural and economic implications of 419 in Nigeria.

Phoenix, paperback, 9780753826973
Hyperion, paperback, 9781401323110

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Laila Lalami

When a young man is given the chance to rewrite his future, he doesn't realize the price he will pay for giving up his past. Raised by his mother in a one room house in the slums of Casablanca, Youssef El Mekki has always had big dreams. Now a nineteen year old student, he watches old movies in a dilapidated neighbourhood cinema. Never missing a show, he imagines himself the hero, living another life in another world. And then one day, the unattainable is suddenly within reach. In the spirit of The Inheritance of Loss and The Reluctant Fundamentalist, Laila Lalami's debut novel looks at the struggle for identity, the need for love and family, and the desperation that grips ordinary lives in a world divided by class, politics, and religion.

Viking, paperback, 9780670918294 (February)
Algonquin Books, paperback, 9781565129795 (March)

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Gaile Parkin

Angel Tungazara has recently moved to Rwanda from her native Tanzania. With her husband, Pius, and the five orphaned children of their late son and daughter, she is hardly short of things to do. But she still finds time to pursue her hobby and her passion, her small but increasingly successful business.

Penguin (SA), paperback, 9781843547471
Atlantic Books (UK), hardcover, 9781843547471
Delacorte Press (US), hardcover, 9780385343435

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Gail Hareven
Translated from the Hebrew by Dalya Bilu

Acclaimed author Noa Weber has a successful “feminist” life: a strong career, a wonderful daughter she raised alone, and she is a recognized and respected cultural figure. Yet her interior life is bound by her obsessive love for one man—Alek, a Russian émigré and the father of her child, who has drifted in and out of her life.

Trying to understand—as well as free herself from—this lifelong obsession, Noa turns her pen on herself, and with relentless honesty dissects her life. Against the evocative setting of turbulent, modern-day Israel, this examination becomes a quest to transform irrational desire into a greater, transcendent understanding of love.

Melville House, paperback, 9781933633688