Books By Hassan Blasim, Samar Yazbek Win 2012 PEN Awards

Earlier today, the English PEN announced the winners of its “Writers in Translation” awards, which help publishers “market, promote, champion and celebrate literature in translation.” Two of the awards are for Arabic literature. They are:

The Iraqi Christ, by Hassan Blasim, translated by Jonathan Wright and to be published by Comma Press this year. Blasim’s first collection, Madman of Freedom Square (also trans. Wright) was a sharp, at times brilliant debut that was longlisted for the Independent Prize for Foreign Fiction.

Woman in the Crossfire, by Samar Yazbek’s memoir, translated by Max Weiss and forthcoming from Haus Publishing this July. You can read an excerpt of her memoirs on The Guardian, trans. Peter Theroux, and more from Yazbek on Jadaliyya.