A literary tour of the world

world map

A year or two ago I decided to read one popular novel from every country in the world. The only conditions I set myself were:
1. that the novel had to be fiction;
2. that the author had to be well known in his or her country; and
3. that there had to be an English translation available.

To begin with it was pretty easy; there are quite a few English-speaking countries in the world! Yet as I began to tick the countries off the list it became increasingly difficult to find good books. Surprisingly, the Wellington library’s selection of North Korean and South Sudanese literature is pretty limited. And since I didn’t have the money to spend on Amazon, I decided to put the project on the backburner and started reading Game of Thrones instead.

However, now that my “to-read” list is beginning to dwindle again, I thought I might pick up where I left off with Le Tour. But this time I’m going to need a little help! Here is the list of countries I have “read” so far. If anybody knows of any good novels from countries I haven’t yet got to, then please let me know!

ALBANIA – The Accident by Ismail Kadare
ARGENTINA – Kiss of the Spiderwoman by Manuel Puig
AUSTRALIA – Capricornia by Xavier Herbert
BANGLADESH – Shame by Taslima Nasrin
BRAZIL – The Alchemist by Paolo Coelho
CANADA – The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz by Mordecai Richler
CHILE – The House of the Spirits by Isabel Allende
CHINA – Dream of Ding Village by Lianke Yan
COLOMBIA – One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
CZECH REPUBLIC – The Unbearable Lightness of Being by Milan Kundera
DENMARK – Mercy by Jussi Adler-Olsen
EGYPT – Akhenaten, Dweller in Truth by Nafiq Mahfuz
ENGLAND – The Return of the Native by Thomas Hardy
FRANCE – The Three Musketeers by Alexandre Dumas
GERMANY – Crabwalk by Gunter Gras
GREECE – Freedom and Death by Nikos Kazantzakis
HUNGARY – Liquidation by Imre Kertesz
INDIA – The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy
ITALY – The Name of the Rose by Umberto Eco
JAPAN – One Man’s Justice by Akira Yoshimura
MEXICO – Inez by Carlos Fuentes
NETHERLANDS – The Twin by Gerbrand Bakker
NEW ZEALAND – The Whale Rider by Witi Ihimaera
NIGERIA – Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe
NORWAY – Hunger by Knut Hamsun
PAKISTAN – A Case of Exploding Mangoes by Mohammed Hanif
PERU – Aunt Julia and the Scriptwriter by Mario Vargas Llosa
PHILIPPINES – Touch Me Not by Jose Rizal
PORTUGAL – Death At Intervals by Jose Saramago
RUSSIA – Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy
SOUTH AFRICA – Disgrace by J M Coetzee
SOUTH KOREA – The Ancient Garden by Hwang Sok-Yong
SPAIN – Don Quixote by Cervantes
SUDAN – Season of Migration to the North by Tayeb Salih
SWEDEN – Three Seconds by Roslund and Hellstrom
TURKEY – My Name is Red by Orhan Pamuk
UKRAINE – The Master and Margarita by Mikhail Bulgakov
UNITED STATES – The Great Gatsby by F Scott Fitzgerald
VIETNAM – Novel Without a Name by Duong Thu Huong
WALES – Rape of the Fair Country by Alexander Cordell

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