One Writer’s Journey

December 23, 2015

Reading the World: More Challenging then you might think

Filed under: Uncategorized — suebe @ 1:20 am
Tags: , ,

One of the reading challenges that I decided to take up for next year is Reading the World.  I want to read reading the worldbook with a variety of viewpoints and what better way to do it then reading books from every country in the world?

Challenge #1 is deciding what constitutes “from that country.”  I started out by googling “Afghanistan books” or something equally brilliant. Low and behold, 100% of the books that came up were written about Afghanistan by western authors.  Hmm.  Seeking out books by authors from that country suddenly felt that much more important.

Next, I followed a link to a Goodreads list of Aghan-fiction.  Khaled Hosseini. I adore Khaled Hosseini.  Well, I adore his books. I don’t know him.  But he was what I needed to verify so I did another search.  Hosseini’s father was a diplomat and when he was 11 they moved to France and from there to the US.  I’ve already read his books, maybe I could find someone who lived in Afghanistan and wrote children’s books.

Another search revealed Idries Shah.  The library has three of his picture books, so I did another search.  Shah was born in India and grew up in England.  Yes, I’ve requested his books but seriously can’t I find someone in Afghanistan?

I mentioned this project to a local librarian and she is already on the search.  Still, I think I have some decisions to make.  Do expatriots count?  Did  the book have to be published in that particular country first? I begin to feel like I’ve set up a truly crazy scavenger hunt for myself!

I finally discovered that you could find authors by googling “Turkish authors” or “Afghani authors” but I want to focus on children’s books.  Genius that I am, it finally hit me.  Start with the ALA Mildred Batchelder Award.  Yep.  Books in translation.  Books not published in the US that are available in English.  I will not admit how long it took me to arrive at this thought.

–SueBE

 

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