Yves Petry (b. 1967, Belgium) is a writer of novels and essays. He studied mathematics and philosophy, and has published five novels so far. His 1999 debut Het jaar van de man (The Year of the Man) was well-received by critics, as were his subsequent books. His latest novel, De maagd Marino (The Virgin Marino, 2010) was awarded the prestigious Libris Literature Prize in 2011. Petry has won acclaim for his philosophical novels that give a voice to extreme characters, whose ideas he sets forth with great virtuosity.
Hester Velmans is an author and translator specializing in contemporary Dutch and French literature. Born in the Netherlands, educated in Switzerland and England, and now living in western Massachusetts, she has translated the novels of authors such as Lulu Wang, Renate Dorrestein, Stefan Brijs, Isabel Hoving, Leo Pleysier, and Bernard du Boucheron for various English-language publishing houses. Her translation of Dorrestein’s A Heart of Stone won the Vondel Prize for Dutch Translation in 2001, and she recently received a 2014 NEA Translation Fellowship to translate the neglected Dutch novelist Herman Franke. She is also the author of the popular children’s book Isabel of the Whales and its sequel Jessaloup’s Song. Forthcoming translations include Saskia Goldschmidt’s The Hormone Factory, Hedda Kalshoven’s I Think So Often about You, and Daylight by Marion Pauw.