Plenty of musicians write memoirs. A few publish poetry collections. But not many write novels aside from Rita Indiana, lead singer of the Dominican Republic’s Rita Indiana y Los Misterios. Fusing traditional merengue music with alternative rock, Indiana’s band is as fresh and original as her newly translated novel, Papi. Originally published in Spanish in 2005, the University of Chicago Press’s English release was translated by Achy Objeas, who also translated Junot Díaz’s The Brief and Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao.
In 2011, Saudi Arabian novelist Raja Alem became the first woman to win the International Prize for Arabic Fiction for The Dove’s Necklace. However, the news was met with controversy and skepticism, since Alem was also the first co-winner of the award, along with Moroccan writer Achaari.
12-year-old boys have enough problems without waking up one morning to find themselves the last human being on Earth. Especially not when the world has (literally) gone to pieces. The Only Living Boy—about a New York City tween who teams up with an insect princess and a mermaid warrior in a fragmented, “patchwork” version of Earth—is a wildly inventive, young-adult graphic novel from David Gallaher and Steve Ellis, last seen as co-creators of DC Comics’ werewolf/Western mashup High Moon.