Gappah in Faber & Faber’s historical publication

AWARD-WINNING author Petinah Gappah’s short story, An Elegy for Easterly, will be among pieces that will make up a landmark series of the best works ever published in the history of Faber & Faber, as the United Kingdom publisher marks its 90th anniversary next year.

BY LIFE & STYLE REPORTER

Gappah said she was thrilled to be considered among Faber & Faber’s finest authors on a long list that includes the likes of Samuel Beckett, Alan Bennett, PD James, Kazuo Ishiguro, Edna O’Brien, Sally Rooney and Akhil Sharma.

“I am delighted to be recognised for my contribution to my favourite form, and for the honour of being included as one of those who have added to the storied history of the publishing house of TS Eliot,” she said.

“I am also delighted that the story chosen is one I was told breaks every single rule of the short story, but somehow is also the best story I have written. I am very proud to have written An Elegy for Easterly.

“This opportunity presents me with the ability to rewrite something I have regretted for a while.”

Gapah said she penned the story in 2007 while uncertain about how much of her Shona language she could get away with in a story written in English.

“So I translated the lullaby that closes the story. I think it was a good translation as it respects the sense and rhythm of the original, but I am hoping it will be reissued with some of the words from the full lullaby,” she said.

According to Faber & Faber, the landmark series represents “masters of the short story at work”.

“Bringing together past, present and future in our ninetieth year, Faber stories is a celebratory compendium of collectable work,” the publisher said on their website.

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