Translations for books by Scholastique Mukasonga, Mutt-Lon, Imbolo Mbue, and Sulaiman Addonia are currently available for your reading pleasure.
Book: Frau auf bloBen FüBen
Original Title: La Femme Aux Pieds Nus
Author: Scholastique Mukasonga
Translator: Gudrun and Otto Honke
Publisher: Peter Hammer Verlag
Publishing Date: March 8, 2022
Language: French to German
Scholastique Mukasonga is a French Rwandan author born in 1956 in the former Gikongoro province of Rwanda. In 2012, She won the prix Renaudot and the prix Ahmadou-Kourouma for her book Our Lady of the Nile. In addition to being a finalist for the International Dublin Literary Award and the Los Angeles Times Book Prize, Mukasonga was rewarded in 2014 with the Seligman Prize against racism and intolerance and in 2015 with the prize Société des gens de lettres.
Frau auf bloBen FüBen
Rwandan author Scholastique Mukasonga remembers her mother Stefania. “The Woman on Bare Feet” is a declaration of love to a strong woman whose obsession was to protect her children: from the loss of the Tutsi’s cultural heritage and above all from violent death. In the end she didn’t succeed: together with 36 Stefania fell victim to family members in the genocide in Rwanda in 1994. Many years later, the author, the only survivor, finds a wonderfully poetic, clear language for the memory of her family’s life in barren southern Rwanda, where many Tutsi families were displaced in the 1960s Surrounded by the growing hatred of the Hutu, Stefania had proudly fought for a life in the tradition of her culture. Scholastique Mukasonga brings the everyday life of the Tutsi community back to life with warmth and humour. It gives back names and stories to the nameless dead of genocide and its beauty to an ancient culture.
The Blunder by Mutt-Lon
Book: The Blunder
Original Title: La Veuve Chauve
Translator: Amy B. Reid
Publisher: Amazon Crossing
Publishing Date: July 12, 2022
Language: French to English
Mutt-Lon is the literary pseudonym of author Nsegbe Daniel Alain. His first novel, Ceux qui sortent dans la nuit (Those Who Come Out at Night, 2013), brought him critical acclaim when it received the prestigious Ahmadou Kourouma Prize in 2014. Les 700 aveugles de Bafia (2020), published in English as The Blunder, is his third novel and the first to be translated into English. He lives in Douala—Cameroon’s most international and cosmopolitan city—and speaks English fluently.
Cameroon, 1929. As colonial powers fight for influence in Africa, French military surgeon Eugène Jamot is dispatched to Cameroon to lead the fight against sleeping sickness there. But despite his humanitarian intentions, the worst comes to pass: seven hundred local villagers are left blind as a result of medical malpractice by a doctor under Jamot’s watch.
Damienne Bourdin, a young white woman, ventures to Cameroon to assist in the treatment effort. Reeling from the loss of her child, she’s desperate to redeem herself and save her reputation. But the tides of rebellion are churning in Cameroon, and soon after Damienne’s arrival, she is enlisted in a wild plot to staunch the damage caused by the blunder and forestall tribal warfare. Together with Ndongo, a Pygmy guide, she must cross the country on foot in search of Edoa, a Cameroonian princess and nurse who has gone missing since the medical blunder was discovered.
As Damienne races through the Cameroonian forest on a farcical adventure that unsettles her sense of France’s “civilizing mission,” she begins to question her initial sense of who needed saving and who would save the day
Book: Puissions-nous vivre longtemps
Original Title: How Beautiful We Were
Author: Imbolo Mbue
Translator: Catherine Gibert
Publishing Date: February 4, 2021
Language: English to Portuguese
Imbolo Mbue left Limbe, the capital of Cameroon, in 1998 to study in the United States. She grew up reading the great African authors: Chinua Achebe, Ngugi wa Thiong’o, but it was with Toni Morrison and Gabriel Garcia Marquez that her feeling of being split between two cultures found an echo. Top American publishers bid for Here Come the Dreamers, her debut novel, which was a hit at the 2014 Frankfurt Fair. May We Live Long is her second novel. She lives in Manhattan.
Puissions-nous vivre longtemps
The portrait of a courageous and determined woman, against a backdrop of conflicts linked to capitalism in Africa.
“We should have known the end was near. When it started raining acid and the water in the rivers turned green, we should have known that soon our land would be dead. When they arrived in Kosawa , a small village in West Africa, Westerners had nothing but progress, prosperity on their lips… Prosperity through oil. Progress through pollution. Today, the youth are revolting. Following Thula, a free and powerful young woman, the poisoned village launches an assault on omnipotent capitalism. And if the fight seems lost in advance, may we, at least, live long. To not forget it.
Le Silence Est Ma Langue Natale by Sulaiman Addonia
Book: Le Silence Est Ma Langue Natale
Original Title: Silence Is My Mother Tongue
Author: Sulaiman Addonia
Publisher: La Croisée
Publishing Date: April 13, 2022
Language: French to English
Where to find it: Amazon,
Sulaiman Addonia is an Eritrean-Ethiopian-British novelist. His first novel, The Consequences of Love, shortlisted for the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize, was translated into more than 20 languages. Silence is My Mother Tongue, his second novel, has been longlisted for the 2019 Orwell Prize for Political Fiction. He currently lives in Brussels where he has launched a creative writing academy for refugees and asylum seekers, the Asmara-Addis Literary Festival (In Exile), & co-founded with Specimen Press a new literary prize, To Speak Europe in Different Languages: Hybrid and collective writing competition.
Le Silence Est Ma Langue Natale
Night has fallen when Hagos and Saba, brother and sister, arrive in a refugee camp in Sudan with their mother. They have nothing left and have fled their country at war, but their hearts still beat: Hagos, mute and fragile, and Saba, with a fierce character, will find love in the middle of the ruins. It is in this world apart, a place condensed with humanity, that brother and sister will break taboos, reverse genres and illustrate a tale of sensual love in the midst of chaos. With this elegiac novel that goes against prejudice, Sulaiman Addonia redefines the literature of exile and celebrates love in all its forms with modernity. In the tradition of Wild Flowering by Aharon Appelfeld, Silence is my native language shakes up our landmarks and our codes, and by the power of its language, illuminates the unbearable reality.
Silence Is My Native Tongue was a finalist for the Lambda Literary Award and the Orwell Prize for Political Fiction. It is being adapted for film.