Books in translation

City of the Beasts, by Isabel Allende

When his mother is taken seriously ill, fifteen-year-old Alexander Cold is sent to live with his forbidding grandmother. Kate is not your typical warm and cuddly grandmother, rather she is brusque, adventurous and no-nonsense. Kate is preparing to embark on an expedition into the Amazonian rainforest and, rather than change her plans, she takes Alexander along with her.
They set off with their team, including a local guide and his young daughter Nadia, deep into the rainforest. Their aim is to locate an isolated and potentially headhunting tribe, as well as a legendary marauding creature known only as “The Beast”. As they get further from civilisation, and expedition members start disappearing, they will discover much more than they bargained for about the mysteries of the jungle and its inhabitants. Read More »

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The Boy in the Suitcase, by Lene Kaaberbøl & Agnete Friis

Nina Borg is a Red Cross nurse living in Copenhagen with her family. She is dedicated to her work and to helping people in need. So, when her old friend Karin calls her in a panic and asks for her help, she cannot say no. Karin gives Nina the key to a storage locker at the station and asks her to retrieve the contents. Nina was in no way expecting what she finds. Inside the locker is a suitcase, and inside the suitcase is a three-year-old boy, drugged and naked. Read More »

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The Dying Game, by Asa Avdic

The year is 2037 and the world is very different from today. There has been a second Cold War and Europe is divided into Protectorates, presumably controlled by the USSR. In the Protectorate of Sweden, seven people have been selected as applicants for a top-secret intelligence position. They are gathered on the remote island of Isola for a 48-hour test as the first step in the recruitment process. Among them is Anna Francis, deeply troubled by her experiences in the warzone at the border of Turkmenistan. Her role in the test is simple: she is to play dead. The plan is to stage her own murder and then retreat to a secret underground room and observe the other participants as they deal with this crisis. But something is not quite right on the island and, as a storm blows in, cutting off the electricity and contact with the mainland, things start to get out of hand. Read More »

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The Girl Who Saved the King of Sweden, by Jonas Jonasson

Just because the world ignores you, doesn’t mean you can’t save it…
For Nombeko Mayeki, born in a shack in Soweto, South Africa’s largest slum, the future was not looking so bright. But this is the story of how being run over can sometimes be a good thing. How else would Nombeko have learned all about the production of atomic bombs, emigrated to Sweden as a refugee and been on the run from one of the most ruthless intelligence agencies in the world? All in the company of three Chinese sisters, a Vietnam veteran, twins who officially one person and a Baroness with a potato farm. Read More »

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my to-read shelf:
Katie Munro's book recommendations, liked quotes, book clubs, book lists (to-read shelf)