As you may have noticed, I have a fascination with other countries. No single country in particular, though there are some that exert more of a pull on me more than others — rather, the whole world intrigues me.
But I don’t read nearly as much international literature as I’d like. I’m going to guess you’re the same way.
Here, then, is a starting list of (mostly) fiction I’ve read from countries other than Canada, the USA, and England. It’s very 101-level for the most part, but still, I hope it’s helpful! If you have recommendations from countries not your own, in translation or otherwise, please chime in…
- Albania – Ismail Kadare, The Successor (literary)
- Argentina – Jorge Luis Borges, The Book of Sand (magic realism)
- Belgium – Hergé, The Adventures of Tintin (comics)
- Columbia – Gabriel García Márquez, Chronicle of a Death Foretold (magic realism) and Living to Tell the Tale (autobiography)
- Czech Republic – Karel Čapek, R.U.R. (science fiction play)
- Denmark – Hans Christian Andersen (fairy tales)
- France – Jules Verne, Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea, Around the World in Eighty Days, Paris in the Twentieth Century (science fiction and/or adventure); Albert Camus, The Stranger (literary)
- India – Arundhati Roy, The God of Small Things (literary)
- Ireland – James Joyce, Ulysses, A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man, Dubliners (literary)
- Italy – Umberto Eco, The Island of the Day Before (magic realism)
- Lebanon – Kahlil Gibran, The Prophet (spiritual)
- Nigeria – Chinua Achebe, Things Fall Apart (literary)
- Norway – Knut Hamsun, Hunger (literary); Sigrid Undset, Kristin Lavransdatter (historical); Henrik Ibsen (plays)
- Poland – Stanislaw Lem, The Futurological Congress (science fiction)
- Russia – Ekaterina Sedia, The Secret History of Moscow (urban fantasy); Sergei Lukyanenko, The Night Watch (urban fantasy); Yevgeny Zamyatin, We (science fiction); Alexander Solzhenitsyn, One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich (literary)
- Sweden – Astrid Lindgren (children’s books)
That’s 16 countries. As you can see, there’s a serious tilt towards Europe and away from genre fiction. That’s because I read most of these in school. If you can expand the horizons of this list, please do!
Another time I’ll share with you the (much longer) list of international books that are on my radar but that I just haven’t gotten to yet…
Your turn! What books/authors can you add to this list?