This is an archived issue of Belletrista. If you are looking for the current issue, you can find it here
Belletrista - A site promoting translated women authored literature from around the world
photo of Hanan al-Shaykh Photo of 19th century women feeding printing press Photo of Gail Jones

Andy Barnes tells us why
Hanan al-Shaykh is "one of the Middle East's finest contemporary writers"

Don't Stop the Presses! Women's and Feminist Presses

Ways of Seeing: Two Novels by Australian author Gail Jones

Welcome, readers, to our eighth issue. Like all previous issues we have stuffed this one full of great books and authors for you to discover. Whether you would like to read a book written by an author from places far from where you are or one close to home, we have a book here for you! We've featured Lebanese author Hanan al-Shaykh and Australian author Gail Jones in this issue, and also have highlighted ten women's or feminist presses publishing in English. Three of our readers take part in the 2nd of our "Conversations", discussing the novel Touch by Palestinian author Adania Shibli. And please check out our blog (link further down on the page) and talk to us!

Click on 'Reviews' to see the full list of this issue's reviews...
Book cover
Nalini Jones

Nalini Jones' short story collection opens a door into an India you may never have encountered before. Yes, you will still encounter the saris, the curries, the streets full of rickshaws and bullocks, but this special world has another delicious flavor all its own.

Reviewed by Kathleen Ambrogi
Book cover
Amélie Nothomb
Translated from the French by Alison Anderson

Although Amélie Nothomb has been a prolific and acclaimed author for nearly twenty years now, it is only comparatively recently that English translations of her books have started to appear. Now, at last, Hygiene and the Assassin, her 1992 debut novel, is available to English speakers for the first time. I had never read Nothomb before and, given her reputation as a difficult, challenging and even dangerous writer, I started reading with some trepidation.

Reviewed by Andy Barnes
Book cover
Mahasweta Devi
Translated by Sagaree Sengupta and Mandira Sengupta

Up until independence was won in 1947, India was known as the jewel in Britain's imperial crown. From the early 1600s when traders from the East India Company first established trading posts on the Indian mainland, British influence and control rapidly expanded …

Reviewed by Charlotte Simpson
Book cover
Linda Ferri
Translated from the Italian by Ann Goldstein

Inspired by the legend of Cecilia, Linda Ferri's novel is set in second century Rome under the rule of Caesar and the ancient Roman gods. In a society where men dominate, and women are meant to be silent and submissive, we meet …

Reviewed by Akeela Gaibie-Dawood
Book cover
Selma Lagerlöf
Translated from the Swedish by Paul Norlen

The Saga of Gösta Berling moves freely from lyrical celebrations of nature to harshly realistic descriptions of industry, and on into the realms of folklore and fairytale. Were the book published today, we might …

Reviewed by Jane A. Jones

Book Cover: Sky Burial
Three Belletrista readers discuss Touch by Palestinian author Adania Shibli.
If Written By a Woman
Visit our new Belletrista blog!
The Caine Prize for African Writing 2011 – shortlist announced

The shortlist for this year’s Caine Prize has just been announced and three women are in the running for the prestigious award. This is always an exciting time of year – the Prize is a great way to discover short stories by excellent writers. Lucky for us, the Prize’s website links to a copy of …Read the Rest