Let’s celebrate ‘Women in Translation’ month!

August is ‘Women in Translation’ month. Join in and celebrate with us all the awesome female authors whose works are available to English readers through the means of translation.

Did you know that only one third of books translated into English come from female authors? Considering how many great books are out there in the world written by women writers, this is a rather sad figure. Started in 2014 by a blogger, Meytal Radzinski, the aim of ‘Women in Translation’ month is to ‘increase the dialogue and discussion about women writers in translation’, and, simply, to ‘read more books by women in translation’.

If you’d like to take part in ‘Women in Translation’ month, just grab a book and get started! If you need any inspiration, there are some recommendations by the First Edition Team below. Continue reading Let’s celebrate ‘Women in Translation’ month!

Happy Belated Birthday, Charles!

Yes, Mr Dickens would’ve been 200 years old earlier this week (Tuesday in fact – sorry I’m late!). I wonder what he would have thought of 2012 if he could take a peek? His books are gernerally believed to be just as relevant today as they were in Victorian times and he certainly invented some of the most memorable characters in literature. The often whimsical names are a work of art in themselves and instantly provide a snapshot of a character – Scrooge, Uriah Heep and Miss Havisham to name a very few.

The FE book club has chosen a Dickens to read this time around – Our Mutual Friend – his last completed novel (he died before finishing The Mystery of Edwin Drood). As with much of his work, this book focuses on, in the words of critic J. Hillis Miller,  “money, money, money, and what money can make of life” so is very apt in our debt-ridden modern world.

Clocking in at nearly 800 pages, it is our biggest literary challenge yet. We’ve given ourselves a good few weeks to get there, so tune back in to find out how we got on!

What’s your favourite Dickens novel (or small/big screen production?!)?




Embrace the unfamiliar

Here at First Edition we’re all avid readers and even have a FE Book Club to prove it. But we are a diverse lot, which makes for some interesting reading choices – sometimes pushing us to new and unexplored literary areas.

I recently read two very different books – The Door by Magda Szabo and Ghostwalk by Rebecca Stott. The first is set in Hungary in the second half of the twentieth century, the second in Cambridge during more contemporary times.

The Door had me scuttling to Wikipedia on many occasions, to keep up with unfamiliar cultural and historical references. In contrast, part of the joy of Ghostwalk was the familiarity of the sights and streets of Cambridge.

Books, like business, satisfy different needs. It’s great to have the knowledge and ease of a well-loved and familiar genre or culture. But sometimes it’s good to be challenged and look to something outside that comfort zone. In business, it can be worth putting in the extra effort and doing the research to explore a new market or even a new country.

And don’t worry about an unfamiliar language – we’ve got that covered!