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Alindarka’s Children by Alhierd Bacharevič, translated by Jim Dingley and Petra Reid

Alindarka’s Children by Alhierd Bacharevič, translated by Jim Dingley and Petra Reid

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From the publisher:

Winner of the English PEN Award for Translation

‘Kafkaesque with elements of cyberpunk’

-New Eastern Europe

‘An average Russian citizen tends to see Belarus as a Russian province, and in line with traditional Russian nationalism considers Belarusian to be an ‘uncouth village patois’.’

-New Eastern Europe

Alindarka’s Children (Dzieci Alindarkiis, 2014) is a contemporary novel about a brother and a sister interned in a camp. Here, camp leaders teach children to forget their own language and speak the language of the colonizer. Because of this, leaders use of drugs as well as surgery on the larynx to cure the ‘illness’ of using the Belarusian language.

When Alicia and Avi manage to escape, camp leaders pursue them.  Now, the children have to thrive for themselves in this adventure, which bears a likeness to an adult and literary ‘Hansel and Gretel’.

The dialogue translates well to the guttural differences between English Received Pronunciations and Scots. Jim Dingley translated the Russian into RP and Petra Reid, author of MacSonnetries, translated it into Scots.