I shall be away at the Leipzig Book Fair for a couple of days. It is always good. This year, allow me to recommend you catch some of the following, should you be attending:
Jacinta Nandi and Jakob Hein promoting their amusing new book, Fish'n'Chips & Spreewaldgurken - in which a Londoner imagines what East Berlin must have been like and an East Berliner imagines what London must have been like. Guffaws galore, various times and venues.
Benjamin Stein and his translator Brian Zumhagen talking about Die Leinwand/The Canvas, I hope, rather than the less interesting topic of German-Israeli identities as billed. Interlingual fun, Thursday 2 p.m.
A big old panel on the future of the book featuring German and American publishing people, hidden away in the depths of the fair, also Thursday at 2.
David Wagner reading from Leben - they've called it "Life" in English but really it ought to be called "Lives" because the name comes from a bit of a Freudian spelling mistake, but anyway this is the book I want to win the big prize. Sad, dull, happy, exciting, exhilarating prose, various times and venues.
The big awards ceremony, Thursday at 4.
The Lange Leipziger Lesenacht with all the sexy people in a conglomeration of darkened rooms, Thursday night.
A panel of international translators trying to look on the bright side, Friday 11 a.m.
The Party der Jungen Verlage, the same as LLL above but without the readings, Friday night.
The fabtastic Deborah Levy presenting the German version of her novel Swimming Home, Saturday 11 a.m.
Various Irish writers on Saint Patrick's Day, Sunday 2 p.m.
Enjoy. I intend to.