Hersilia is “an independent publisher bringing you the best of Italian crime fiction” and Peirene “specializes in contemporary European literature in English translation”, only publishing though-provoking and well-designed books of less than 200 pages. Peirene also offers subscriptions, or you can buy their cotton “book-bag” for just five pounds.
So both are pretty niche publishers, but their books are such a lovely fit for anybody who love language(s) or crime novels, or is a translator, or all three. If you know them well enough to judge their taste in books, Peirene and Hersilia books could also make good gifts for clients — and act as a little reminder to them of translatorly skills.
For more ideas on books in translation, check out the Booktrust’s Translated Fiction website.
PS: It’s interesting that both Hersilia and Peirene have taken their names from ancient mythology. Hersilia was the wife of Romulus, the founder of Rome. And Peirene “takes its name from a Greek nymph who turned into a water spring. The poets of Corinth discovered the Peirene source and, for centuries, they drank this water to receive inspiration.The idea of metamorphosis fits the art of translation beautifully.”
PPS: More Christmas gift ideas coming later this week!
By Marian Dougan