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Echoing the idea of sonnets from Eastern Europe, another

highlight here is a "wreath" of 15 sonnets by Hungarian-

Roma poet

László Sárközi.

Mentored by the now deceased

enfant terrible

of Hungarian literature, György Faludy,

Sárközi explores the strained relation between his Roma

and Hungarian identity, in this candid, hard, beautiful

sequence. As with the sonnets by Tomasz Różycki, the

translator here de-emphasised the traditional rhyme

scheme from the originals, to best capture the rhythm and

flavour of these startling sonnets in English.

Speaking of translators, this issue features some of the

finest around, including works translated by Bill Johnston,

Mira Rosenthal – and Michael Hofmann, in a chapter here

from acclaimed Swiss-German novelist Peter Stamm's

brand new work in English,

All Days are Night


Finally, to get you in that seasonal mood, we're offering an

entire noir short story,

Kiss of Santa

, by Finland's top crime

writer, Leena Lehtolainen.

These are long, generous selections from some of Europe's

finest novelists and poets today. Some readers tell us our

new digest format is the first time they've really been able

to read quality literature online. So we hope you may

approach in this spirit! Slow down, make a tea, settle in and

experience these works as they so richly deserve, in our

reading room online. Go "full screen" (with that little icon

below the book if on a PC) for best reading. . . and enjoy!