Dace Deniņa - „Moda un Oda” / Maud and Aud

Gunstein Bakke, born in1968, made his literary debut in 2000. He has written three novels and a collection of poetry. In 2012 Bakke received the European Union Prize for Literature as well as the Melsom Award for his book Maud and Aud – A Novel on Traffic. He participated at the Prose Readings Festival in Riga in 2012. Maud and Aud are sitting in the backseat when the driver of their car loses control. Their family is hurled off the road and out of the life they were accustomed to, but one of them, Ruta, in a flash becomes a different person, unable to become who she had been. Almost 30 years later after the accident, Aud is flying over Oslo in a helicopter tracking rush hour as a black Mercedes is behaving erratically on an otherwise calm highway. Aud’s young trainee Lovall decides to find out who was sitting at the wheel of the car that led to the accident.

Dace Deniņa studied Danish and English at the University of Latvia. She graduated in 1995 with a BA in philology, and in 1997 earned an MA in philology and translation studies. During her study period, she spent three semesters at Aarhus University in Denmark.
Since then she has worked as a translator and editor, dealing mainly with literary, scientific and technical translation from Danish, Norwegian, Swedish and English. She cooperates with many Latvianpublishers and works as a freelance translator for the Dienas Žurnāli Publishing House. She has translated around 40 books by Scandinavian authors.
She has been a part of numerous literary translation workshops and conferences organised by Danish, Norwegian and Swedish cultural foundation, and participated in various cultural projects related to the promotion of Nordic culture in Latvia. The most important of them including the commemorative year events of Knut Hamsun and Henrik Ibsen that were organised by the Embassy of Norway.

Dace Meiere - „Nolādētie toskānieši” / Those Cursed Tuscans

This book of essays entitled Those Cursed Tuscans (Maledetti Toscani, 1956), which were written by Curzio Malaparte (1898-1957) in the postwar period is Malaparte’s dedication to his native Tuscany. “It is a declaration of love, imbued with painful cynicism and bitter irony, to this wonderful Italian region. “A Tuscan” sometimes becomes a symbolic image whose features are recognizable to people from different nations,” writes Dace Meiere, the translator of the book into Latvian.

Jānis Krastiņš - „Cilvēka dvēseles inženiera stāsts” / The Engineer of Human Souls

Josef Škvorecký (1924-2012) was a Czech writer and publisher who spent half of his life in Canada, which he emigrated to in 1969 after the suppression of the Prague Spring. The Engineer of Human Souls is a multi-layered novel with a compact plot that also includes comical interludes and follows the life, experiences and relationships of Danny Smiricky, a Czech emigrant in Canada.

Jānis Krastiņš (1950) graduated from the Faculty of Chemistry at the State University of Latvian in 1973. He received a Ph.D. in Science in 1985. Since 1987 he has translated 15 books from Czech into Latvian. Since 1998 he has worked in press review work and as a translator for the Czech Embassy in Riga. He has also served many years as the official interpreter for high-level state visits between Latvia and the Czech Republic, including visits by Czech President Vaclav Havel and Czech Prime Minister Miloš Zeman, as well as official state visits by Latvian President Guntis Ulmanis and Latvian Prime Minister A. Bērziņš to Prague.

Maira Asare - „Akmens kļavas” / The Stone Maples

The story takes place in a bed and breakfast called The Stone Maples, which is located in an imaginary village in Wales. The plot is constructed in the spirit of a detective story, the splendid and rich language of which will delight all language connoisseurs. The mysteries of this almost cursed bed and breakfast, the cold winds whipping up from the Irish Sea, old Welsh legends, a love story oscillating between passion and hate, a mysterious death that possibly might never have happened. It is a book with many twists and turns, with the protagonists changing masks and covering their tracks so masterfully that discovering the secrets of the past is just as important as understanding the significance of the present.

Poet Maira Asare was born in Sigulda in 1960. She has studied medicine at the Riga Medical Institute and journalism at the State University of Latvia. Maira Asare started her career as a personal assistant at the law firm Medvecka, Ramiņa&Arājs, and later worked at the Ventspils Culture Centre and the Ventspils City Library, where she has worked since 2010. Maira Asare has served a term in prison for drug offences and her first work of prose, Sieviešu zona (A Female Joint), has been inspired by this experience. The book offers an insight into the everyday life of women behind bars; it tells the story of people who, for one reason or another, have fallen through the gaps of society. The novel is akin to a photograph, an instantaneous documentation of the prison reality, the events happening there and peoples populating it; the photograph that enables the reader to have a first-hand experience of the place. In cooperation with the poet and translator Sergejs Moreino, Asare wrote Hanzas aukstā liesma (The Cold Flame on Hansa), a book of poems in a bilingual Latvian-Russian edition.
Maira Asare has received the Days of Poetry Award for her book of poems Kas ar dzeguzi spēlējas (He Who Fools Around With a Cuckoo, 1995). She also translates poetry and prose from Russian into Latvian. Among other authors, she has translated works by Sergejs Moreino, Sergejs Timofejevs, Alexei Ivlev and Sasha Sokolov.