The World's Best Unknown Books
25 04 2018

Publishing rediscovered gems around the world

Even though Schwob is currently focused on the promotion of the translation and republication of old classics from world literature in The Netherlands, there are a lot of other parties that do just that around the globe. Today, we want to take a look at the publishers that have dedicated themselves to the modern classics, the must-reads of the recent past and the making accessible of those works through translations.

New York Review of Books Classics // United States of America

New York Review of Books Classics started in 1999 with the publication of Richard Hughes’s A High Wind in Jamaica. Since then they have published over 400 titles.
Eileen Chang - Little reunions
Magda Szabó - The Door
Alfred Döblin - Berlin Alexanderplatz

Persephone Books // United Kingdom

Persephone books is dedicated to the reprinting of “neglected fiction” written predominantly by mid-twentieth century women writers. The company was initially run from a basement office in Clerkenwell and the first book published was William – An Englishman by Cicely Hamilton. Since then they have opened up a store in Bloomsbury.
Cicely Hamilton - William – an Englishman
Virginia Woolf - A Writer’s Diary
Rose Allatini - Despised and Rejected

Guggolz verlag // Germany

The people from Guggolz verlag want to provide an alternative to the fast-paced cycle of book publishing. They want to bring unknown or forgotten work back to the attention of the German reading public, with new translations and editions, in order to stimulate the diversity and quality of the literature available.
Ion Luca Caragiale - Humbug und Variationen
Lewis Grassic Gibbon - Lied vom Abendrot
Harry Martinson - Reisen ohne Ziel

Unionsverlag // Switzerland

Unionsverlag is one of the older companies on this list, having been around for more than 40 years. During that period, they have been dedicated to the republishing of more than 818 classic works of literature.
Tschingis Aitmatow - Dshamilja
Yaşar Kemal - Memed mein Falke
Juri Rytchëu - Traum im Polarnebel

Editorial Minuscula // Spain

Editorial Miniscula is a Spanish publisher that has been around since the year 2000. “Our catalogue reflects a marked interest in European culture, an artistic heritage which has never known boundaries, and in writers who have determined with extraordinary sensitivity the spirit of their times. But there is also space for other geographical zones: whatever one man does, it is as if all men did it, said Borges.”
• Gertrude Stein - París Francia
• Knud Romer - Quien parpadea teme a la muerte
• Leonor de Recondo - Pietra viva

Seagull Books // India

Seagull Books is a publishing venture begun in Kolkata in 1982 by Naveen Kishore, a theater practitioner. It began primarily as a response to the growing need for an Indian publishing house for theater and the other arts and since then it has expanded its operations to include translations of world literature as well as twentieth- and twenty-first-century critical theory and non-fiction.
Yasser Abdellatif - The Law of Inheritance
Abul Bashar - The Open-Winged Scorpion and Other Stories
Maryse Conde - What Is Africa to Me?

Bananafish // The Netherlands

Bananafish is specialized in works that have never been translated into Dutch. It is a young company that has its origins in comic book publisher Scratch books. Since 2016 they have published nine books.
Yasushi Inoue - Het Jachtgeweer
Alfred Jarry - Roemruchte daden en opvattingen van Doctor Faustroll, patafysicus
Máirtín Ó Cadhain - Onder de zoden