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Best Translated Book Awards now worth $5,000, thanks to Amazon

Translationawards

The University of Rochester's Three Percent, a website and resource for international literature, will be able to include a cash prize with its Best Translated Book Awards next year, it announced Thursday, thanks to a grant from Amazon.

The awards, launched in 2007, are designed to draw attention to the best-translated works of fiction and poetry. The translators of the original books, as well as the authors of the works in their original languages, will each recieve a gift of $5,000 when the winners are announced in April.

Three Percent is so named because just 3% of books published in America are works in translation -- the country is a net exporter of literature. The University of Rochester is also home to Open Letter Books, a small publisher focused on works in translation.

The long list for the Best Translated Book Awards is announced in January, and a short list in February, in an effort to build interest in the works that have made the cut. The winners are announced at the PEN World Voices Festival in April in New York.

While Amazon's grant is good news for authors and those interested in works in translation, it sadly won't benefit previous recipients of the awards, including the pictured prior winning books by Gail Hareven and Elena Fanailova, and their translators Dalya Bilu, Genya Turovskaya and Stephanie Sandler.

-- Carolyn Kellogg

 
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