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When Danilo Kiš died in 1989, he was 54 and at the height not just of his powers but of his reputation too. Of the six works of fiction, it had been the most recent, the story collections A Tomb for Boris Davidovich and Encyclopedia of the Dead, that had won him greatest acclaim in the English-reading west. Not that the others had been found wanting; with the exception of Garden, Ashes, they remained untranslated, in the case of his first book – a pair of dissimilar novellas, Psalm 44 and The Attic – for more than a quarter of a century. Now, almost another quarter century on, the novellas are being published alongside a more or less perfect book of late stories, The Lute and the Scars (Dalkey Archive, £8.99). This completes a process – the Englishing of Kiš’s fiction – characterised during his life by indifference or sloth and since his death by energetic devotion.

more from Leo Robson at The Guardian here.

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