Skip to content
Words Without Borders is an inaugural Whiting Literary Magazine Prize winner!

Book Reviews

September 2012

Roberto Ampuero’s “The Neruda Case”

Reviewed by Emma Garman

An unusual meld of history, biography, and fiction, "The Neruda Case" conveys with great acuity how it’s not just the famous who are subject to others’ unrealistic projections.

August 2012

Sergio Chejfec’s “The Planets”

Reviewed by Mythili G. Rao

"The Planets" considers the impact of friendship—and its loss—in cosmic terms.

Carlos Fuentes’s “Vlad”

Reviewed by Heather Cleary

Few monsters have weathered the years with greater aplomb.

July 2012

Laszlo Krasznahorkai’s “Satantango”

Reviewed by Jean Harris

In the world of "Satantango," everything is caught up in an infernal dance.

June 2012

Liu Xiaobo’s “June Fourth Elegies”

Reviewed by Fiona Sze-Lorrain

Poetry charts a circular path to freedom for Chinese political activist and writer Liu Xiaobo.

Lauren Binet’s “HHhH”

Reviewed by Emma Garman

Laurent Binet took an unusual gamble when composing his debut novel "HHhH," a unique blend of WWII history, personal memoir and postmodern experimentation.

Nichita Stanescu’s “Wheel with a Single Spoke and Other Poems”

Reviewed by Andrew Seguin

Part physicist and part naturalist, Romanian poet Nichita Stănescu was always a consonant lyricist.

Andrés Neuman’s “Traveler of the Century”

Reviewed by Megan Berkobien

"Traveler of the Century" is a novel of collisions: of intellectual idealism and cruel reality; of originals and translations; of complacency and unrest

May 2012

Adania Shibli’s “We Are All Equally Far from Love”

Reviewed by Emma Garman

"We Are All Equally Far From Love" is hypnotically visceral in its accrual of mundane details

April 2012

Abdellah Taia’s “An Arab Melancholia”

Reviewed by Shaun Randol

Yet, it is not homosexuality or an Islamic culture that torments the narrator of "An Arab Melancholia"; rather, love is the tyrant in this brief, emotional saga.

Etgar Keret’s “Suddenly, a Knock on the Door”

Reviewed by Andrew Seguin

If a man comes knocking at your door to steal your magic goldfish, what do you do?

Andrey Kurkov’s “The General’s Thumb”

Reviewed by Christopher Tauchen

A retired general is found dead in central Kiev—hanged, apparently, from a giant Coca-Cola advertising balloon.

March 2012

Osamu Dazai’s “Schoolgirl”

Reviewed by Mythili G. Rao

Hardly anything about this book seems to have aged, least of all the narrator herself, who is perfectly preserved somewhere along the road to adolescence.

Jan Phillip Sendker’s “The Art of Hearing Heartbeats”

Reviewed by Malcolm Forbes

Sendker tells the story of an incorruptible love, forged by two kindred spirits, set against the rustic yet lushly exotic backdrop of Southeast Asia

February 2012

Friedrich Christian Delius’s “Portrait of the Mother as a Young Woman”

Reviewed by Rosamund Hunter

Christian Delius confirms his facility with experimental form and skillfully creates a varied and textured experience for the reader

César Aira’s “Varamo”

Reviewed by Heather Cleary

What is it that we do, really, when we write? And why can’t a fish be embalmed to look like it’s playing a tiny piano?

Sigizmund Krzhizhanovsky’s “The Letter Killers Club”

Reviewed by Christopher Tauchen

To the members of the Letter Killers Club, letters of the alphabet are the prison cells of concepts, and they need to be destroyed.

January 2012

Alexandra Chreiteh’s “Always Coca-Cola”

Reviewed by Emma Garman

"Always Coca-Cola" comes off as a work of searing intensity that powerfully conjures the atmosphere of contemporary Beirut.

Admiel Kosman’s “Approaching You in English”

Reviewed by E.C. Belli

Sitting in any of the rooms that is each poem in "Approaching You In English" you’ll notice a tear in the ceiling; none of these poems are sealed shut

December 2011

Dubravka Ugresic’s “Karaoke Culture”

Reviewed by Jean Harris

Part of the allure is for the amateur to wrest the microphone away from the stars and, for a moment, to take their place in the limelight.

Page 9 of 19 pages ‹ First  < 7 8 9 10 11 >  Last ›

Like what you read? Help WWB bring you the best new writing from around the world.