As 2015 comes to a close, we again look back to the year in translation. The end of 2015 marked two new beginnings: a new independent publisher, Spurl Edition, released its first translation in November as a free ebook and will follow with its second translated title in spring 2016; and last year’s new kid on the block, Deep Vellum, announced plans to open a new literary bookstore in Dallas, Texas, in early 2016.
2015 also marked a notable first: the first time the Hugo Award went to a translation, Cixin Liu’s The Three-Body Problem, translated by Ken Liu. Anne Milano Appel won the inaugural Italian Prose in Translation Award for her English translation of Claudio Magris’s Blindly. This and other translation awards were announced at an awards ceremony during the American Literary Translators Association conference in October in Tucson, Arizona. Frequent WLT contributor Denise Newman won the 2015 PEN Translation Prize for her English translation of Naja Marie Aidt’s Baboon. In August, Columbia University Press added to the critical conversation by publishing Rebecca L. Walkowitz’s Born Translated: The Contemporary Novel in an Age of World Literature, and Poets & Writers closed the year with a cover feature on literature in translation, “The World Is Bigger Than We Imagine: The Small-Press Champions of Literature in Translation.”
In our fourth annual list of “75 Notable Translations,” we again offer an admittedly incomplete collection of the year’s English translations. And again, we invite you to share your favorites from the year as well as those you’re most eagerly anticipating in 2016 by using the hashtag #2016Reads on Twitter and Facebook. As World Literature Today enters its 90th year of covering literature in translation, we hope you’ll celebrate with us as we continue to serve as your passport to great reading.