Statovci_Pajtim_Crossing-scaled-1
2021 Longlist

Crossing

Translated from the Finnish by David Hackston
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ABOUT
THE BOOK

Bujar’s world is collapsing. His father is dying and his homeland, Albania, bristles with hunger and unrest. When his fearless friend Agim is discovered wearing his mother’s red dress and beaten with his father’s belt, he persuades Bujar that there is no place for them in their country. Desperate for a chance to shape their own lives, they flee. This is the beginning of a journey across cities, borders and identities, from the bazaars of Tirana to the monuments of Rome and the drag bars of New York. It is also a search through shifting gender and social personae, for acceptance and love. But faced with marginalization at home and only precarious means of escape and survival, what chance do the young pair have of forging a new life? Pursued by memories of home and echoes of folk tales, they risk losing themselves in the struggle to leave their pasts behind.

 

 

 

ABOUT
THE AUTHOR Pajtim
Statovci

Pajtim Statovci was born in Kosovo to Albanian parents in 1990. His family fled the Yugoslav wars and moved to Finland when he was two years old. He holds an MA in comparative literature and is a PhD candidate at the University of Helsinki. His first book, My Cat Yugoslavia, won the Helsingin Sanomat Literature Prize for best debut novel; his second novel, Crossing, was a finalist for the National Book Award. Bolla was awarded the Finland’s highest literary honor, The Finlandia Prize, and was a finalist for the Kirkus Prize in Fiction.

Pajtim Statovci was born in Kosovo to Albanian parents in 1990. His family fled the Yugoslav wars and moved to Finland when he was two years old. He holds an MA in comparative literature and is a PhD candidate at the University of Helsinki. His first book, My Cat Yugoslavia, won the Helsingin Sanomat Literature Prize for best debut novel; his second novel, Crossing, was a finalist for the National Book Award. Bolla was awarded the Finland’s highest literary honor, The Finlandia Prize, and was a finalist for the Kirkus Prize in Fiction.

ABOUT
THE TRANSLATOR David
Hackston

David Hackston is a British translator of Finnish and Swedish literature and drama. He graduated from University College London with a degree in Scandinavian Studies and now lives in Helsinki where he works as a freelance translator.

 

David Hackston is a British translator of Finnish and Swedish literature and drama. He graduated from University College London with a degree in Scandinavian Studies and now lives in Helsinki where he works as a freelance translator.

 

NOMINATING LIBRARY COMMENTS

This second novel by the award-winning Finnish-Kosovan writer Pajtim Statovci is a masterfully written, emotionally forceful and gripping story about identities, a journey through cities and genders in search of love and belonging. It is a story that will stay with you long after you close the last page of the book. 

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

Country
Finland
Original Language
Finnish
Publisher
Pushkin Press
Translator
David Hackston
Translation
Translated from the Finnish by David Hackston

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