Friday, 11 July 2014

Friday Memes and 'Mercy and Other Stories' by Rebecca Lloyd

Book Blogger HopIt's Friday, so excuse the obvious post with the memes. But I enjoy all of them too much to not participate each week! So, on to business, or so they say. Book Blogger Hop is hosted by Billy over at Ramblings of a Coffee Addicted Writer and this week's question was submitted by Emma from Words and Peace!

Do you books in translation? What are the last 3 book translations you read?

I do read quite a lot of books in translation, I think. Growing up half-Dutch, half-German, I read most books in translation. Mainly Harry Potter, which I have always read in German, even after I learned English. The great thing was that they kept all of the names as they were in English, whereas the Dutch version, thinking it was obviously a kid's book, changed all of the names, which meant that by the time the books got darker, you had these characters walking around with ridiculous names! Anyways, the last three translations I read/reviewed were:

  1. 1948, written by Yoram Kaniuk and translated by Anthony Berris
  2. The Impossible Dreamworld of Champa the Driver, written by Chan Koonchung and translated by Nicky Harman
  3. The Professor and the Siren, written by Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampeduse and translated by Stephen Twilley
I named my blog A Universe in Words because I wanted to push myself to read as many books from all over the world as I could. Unfortunately I don't read as many as I'd like to, but there's a good few.

Follow Friday is hosted by Alison Can Read and Parajunkee and this week's question is:

If you had a time machine (i.e. a TARDIS), where would you go?
I would love to have a time machine, even though I'm reading H.G. Wells' The Time Machine and it isn't making me very fond of time travel. Although, Wells' novel is one of the few in which I can accept time travel, whereas in general I really don't think it works in a narrative, at all. J.K. Rowling did it really well in Prisoner of Azkaban as well, but that was because there the time travel was part of the story from the very beginning, if you know what I mean. Hermione always threw the rock, not just at the end of the book.

Anyways, if I could travel anywhere I'd probably travel back to the time of the Anglo-Saxons, just because I could ask people what exactly they were thinking when they wrote Beowulf etc. It would really help me ace my last year at University, I think. Although there's a big chance I'd never come back!

Book Beginnings and Friday 56 are hosted by Gilion over at Rose City Reader and Freda at Freda's Voice respectively. This week I'm using a book I reviewed a couple of days ago, Mercy and Other Stories by Rebecca Lloyd. It's a collection of strange short stories, so the BB and F56 aren't from the same story!

'I do not play piano now; it is no longer interesting to me; since my wife was stolen, I have lost heart in it. I played only for her, and my music drifted sweetly through the rooms of our house. I know if she could have, she would have danced for me in the dress of blue organza, making the dust motes swirl in the sunlight.' 1%
Don't let the sweetness of this beginning fool you, this husband is crazy!

'It was about a month later that the whole ghastly business tumbled out of him. He made me quickly afraid, not of course about the real thing, but about what I took to be the utter mashed up state his nerves were in.' 56%
This was one of the stranger stories in the collection, although I really liked how Lloyd described the paranoia of the characters!

So, which books are you sharing today? Any translations? And where would you go in a time machine?


  1. I like your reasoning for your blog title.

    Interesting reads you listed.

    Love your book beginning.

    Happy Friday!!

    Happy Hopping!!

    Silver's Reviews
    My Blog Hop Answer

    I would love to go back in time :)

    Here's MY FF

    Christine Danielle @ Bibliophilic Madness

  3. I enjoy reading books that are set in different countries. Makes me feel as if I'm traveling and learning something new as well.
    Book Dilettante

  4. Wow. He sounds like a real winner. Thanks for posting.

  5. I haven't read any translated books yet, although if I did see a book of interest I would certainly give it a go.

  6. Haven't read anything by this author--thanks for sharing. My Friday post:

  7. I usually am not drawn to short stories but this sounds really interesting!
    Happy Reading,
    Rebecca @ The Key to the Gate

  8. I don't often read short story collections, but when they do engage me, they are so memorable. I like the sound of these stories. The beginning is so sad: his wife was "stolen." I am curious about that. And the paranoia in the 56. Thanks for sharing...and for visiting my blog.

  9. The short stories sound quite interesting. How interesting to be able to compare different translations in different languages. I can see how the German HP would be preferable to the Dutch version.
    I'm not sure where'd I'd go with a time machine even though my favorite episodes of Doctor Who are the ones where they go back in the past. I'd like to see just about everything but as an invisible observer.

  10. Wow, there are these so many memes on Friday? I only see a lot on Wednesday and Sunday.

    Thanks for passing by my ff. New GFC follower.

  11. Haha! I love your F&F answer! HG Wells wrote some amazing (and mildly disturbing) books. I think visiting the Anglo-Saxons would be interesting, for sure. A little dangerous maybe... but interesting :) Old follower!

    Here's my F&F!

  12. Interesting BBH answer this week.

  13. Pretty cool place to travel back to. Thanks for hopping through. :)

  14. Going back to the Anglo-Saxons period sounds really interesting! I'd love to know the motivation behind those stories as well!

    New follower via GFC
    My FF

  15. Interesting. I like collections of stories too.
    sherry @ My Friday 56

  16. LOVE the image of the blue organza dress and swirling dust motes, even if the guy is crazy! I haven't read a book of short stories lately, though I do enjoy them. This sounds like a good one.
    Thank you for stopping by my Friday post: WHAT MATTERS MOST.

  17. I would love to go back to Anglo-Saxon times :)

    Old Follower
    Zareena @ Books and Books

  18. OMG! It's pretty surprising that you wouldn't like to come back to the present. Although I might like to visit the past but wouldn't like to actually live there.
    Thanks for stopping by my blog. I followed you back on Bloglovin.
    Kero @ Kero's Book Blog

  19. Interesting answer. Though I don't want to stay in the past, I just can't say goodbye to technology =(

    Thank for stopping by my FF.
    Followed back =)

  20. Sounds like an interesting set of short stories!

    Happy weekend!

  21. Haha actually a good idea to use the time travel to get all the facts straight and actually experience what happened in the past. I bet the exam papers etc. would become amazing that way!

  22. My heart aches with the book beginning! I'm such a sucker for love and romance, I would certainly read this one; thanks for sharing! :)

    Also, today was my first time joining the Follow & Feature link-up party; I am a new follower :)

    Sparrow's BB & Friday 56

  23. Lol thanks for the warning, I totally thought he was such a sweet man.
    What makes him crazy though?

    My BB & 56 

  24. That would be a fun era to visit. Thanks for stopping by my blog! I am a new follower via GFC:)
    Brittany @ Spare Time Book blog

  25. Cool pick! :)
    Thanks for stopping by!:)
    Old Follower.

  26. The Anglo-Saxsons time would be interesting. Good choice!
    Thank you for stopping by. :)
    Old follower

  27. Anglo-Saxons interest me too - great answer. If you like Beowulf, have you also read The Wanderer and some of the other poems?

  28. Thanks for stopping by my blog! New follower:)

    Bayan @ The Booklicker

  29. Great post and a great 56! Have a great weekend!

  30. Oh my goodness, what ghastly business? Not a good thing.

  31. Great post! The Anglo Saxons would be very interesting.
    New bloglovin follower. Thanks for stopping by my blog.
    Sharon @ Sharon's Book Nook!

  32. I decided that if I were to time a pick a time period to travel to, it would be medieval, but I'd have to take plenty of hand sanitizer with me.
    Great post :)
    I followed you back.

  33. I'm really impressed with your recent translated works reads! Your commentary made me laugh throughout -- time travel (!) and a crazy hubby (!)

    (PS. I'm getting pretty bad with memes... so I admire your being able to keep up with them!)

  34. Interesting story behind your blog title. :) I haven't read a translated story since college, but I don't take it account when choosing my books.

  35. Anglo- Saxons is a very interesting choice! Great pick :)

  36. That's a perfect reason to go and visit those Ango-Saxon guys. ;)
    Thanks for stopping by my FF. I'm an old follower, too.