Review: Fish Swimming in Dappled Sunlight, by Riku Onda

Leanne Ogasawara in the Dublin Review of Books:

Why do Americans read so few books in translation? Well, compared with the German or Japanese markets, which see about ten times as many books in translation published in any given year, not a lot of work in translation gets published. Crime fiction might be one notable exception to this since English readers have an unquenchable appetite for them. While Onda writes all types of fiction, from genre to literary, it is her mysteries that are getting picked up. First was New York Times 2020 Notable Book, The Aosawa Murders, and this year it is her Fish Swimming in Dappled Sunlight.

Both books have been expertly translated by prize-winning literary translator Alison Watts. Translators’ names need to be on the covers by default. Of course they are making these works available to us by reworking them in a different language. Moreover, when there are questions about whether an author is writing in English or not ‑ such as in the case of Kazuo  Ishiguro or Salman Rushdie, for example ‑ readers would be clued in by the absence of a translator’s name on the cover.

More here.