16 July 2009

Archipelago!

I'm a big fan of the great work done by Archipelago Books, one of the few publishers in the U.S. specializing in literature in translation.  I first discovered them around the time I read Büchner's Lenz in the beautiful edition they released a few years back.  Since then, they've released a bunch of marvelous books that might otherwise be unavailable to English-language readers (while I'm making recommendations, Mandarins is a magnificent collection of stories.  Oh, and any fan of weird fiction should take a look at Palafox.  And you can't go wrong with Breyten Breytenbach.  And-- Well, take your pick...)

Archipelago recently sent out an email saying that the current economic environment has hit them pretty hard.  All of their basic sources of funding -- book sales, grants, donations -- have suddenly been reduced, causing Archipelago to have to scramble to stay alive.

Basically, they need some help to get through this.  If you don't want to just send them money, you can buy their books -- preferably from them, because that way they get the biggest percentage of what you spend.  Or you can subscribe to a season or a year of their books, which is a really great deal (I mean, you're going to buy Breytenbach's book for writers, Intimate Stranger, and Kleist's Selected Prose and a bunch of others anyway, so why not get them all for a good discount and help a valuable publisher keep publishing?

We need books in translation.  We need books from beyond our own provincial shores.  Very few publishers specialize in such work.  Archipelago is one of the few and one of the best.  They're the good guys.  Let's help them survive this difficult moment and build a strong foundation for the future -- we'll all be better off for it.

1 comment:

  1. Donated what I could.

    Now I feel guilty ordering "Tranquility" off of Amazon. I had no idea what neat little press Archipelago was.

    ReplyDelete