Three books to be translated into English

Istros Books

Literary Translation



Total project grant (euros)


Percentage of budget funded



Creative Europe



Call number


Project date

1 Sep 2014 - 31 Aug 2016

This project aims to compliment and build upon Istros' founding strategy to bring quality literature from South East Europe to English-speaking readers. Each book has been selected on its merits as a quality piece of prose whose narrative can reach across borders and engage readers from other cultures. Istros Books has conferred with local critics, publishers and translators in order to locate works that are concerned with issues that go beyond local and national interests and deal with themes that are common to humanity. It is hoped that by introducing these new writers to the English-speaking market, they can find a new readership and therefore reveal this neglected dimension of European literature and open the way for further cultural understanding.

We are very proud to be including two winners of the EU Prize for Literature 2013 - for Romania and Bosnia & Herzegovina. The Bosnian title - Knjiga o Uni/Book of Una - also won the Mesa Selimovic Prize in 2011, (for the best book published on the territory of former Yugoslavia) and is a highly poetic and profound meditation on the war years of the early nineties, as well a nostalgic look at childhood and the realities of living in post-conflict society. We consider it especially important to publish and promote the work of Bosnian authors given the lack of any government support in their own country, as well as the desire to highlight, here in the UK, the literary achievement in a country so torn by political and social discontent and hardship.

The second Bosnian title - Giaour and Zuleika - and the Romanian novel - Life Begins on Friday - are both rooted in the realm of historical imagination, yet possess a very distinct appeal to wider audiences due to their strong story lines, well-paced plots and distinctly drawn characters. Life Begins on Friday will be published in the UK with a specially written foreword by Romania's most respected contemporary author, Mircea Carterescu.

Istros Books applied for support for the translation, publication and promotion of the following titles:

1. The Story of Una (Knjiga o Uni) by Faruk Šehić Translation from Bosnian into English Read more about the author and the novel

2. Life Begins on Friday (Viaţa începe vinery) by Ioana Pârvulescu. Translation from Romanian into English. Read more about the author and the novel

3. Giaour and Zuleika by Muharem Bazdulj Translation into English

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