PEN award-winning title Sworn Virgin by Elvira Dones will hit UK bookshops this May. Elvira Dones, one of the most distinguished Albanian authors writing today, questions art, culture, identity and gender in this new novel, which features a foreword by Ismail Kadare. Sworn Virgin is translated by Clarissa Botsford and published by And Other Stories.
About the book
Hana Doda is an ambitious literature student in cosmopolitan Tirana. Mark Doda is a raki-drinking, chain-smoking shepherd, living alone deep in the Albanian mountains. In fact, they are the same person. When Hana’s dying uncle calls her home from the city, he asks her to marry a local boy in order to run the household. Unable to accept the arranged marriage and resolved to remain independent, she must vow in accordance with Albanian tradition to live the rest of her life in chastity as a man – and becomes Mark. There is no way back for a sworn virgin.
Years later Mark receives an invitation to join a cousin in Rockville, Maryland U.S.A. This is Mark’s opportunity to escape his vow and to leave Albania for modern America. But what does he know about being a woman?
‘Elvira Dones is among the best of Albania’s writers and her publication in English is excellent news.’
Elvira Dones will be in the UK for the following events:
Monday 19th May, 7 for 7:30pm, The Library at Hardy’s Brasserie, 53 Dorset Street, London, W1U 7NH
This is the first in a regular dinner party we will be hosting throughout the year, in which a small group of people get to join us for dinner with one of our authors, their translator.
We will all be around one large table and people shall be rotated after each course to give everyone a chance to talk to Elvira, her translator Clarissa Botsford and at least one person from And Other Stories.
Space is limited and booking is essential.
£30 per head for a 3-course dinner and aperitif (excl. wine). A £10 deposit is required.
To Book, contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
Tuesday 20th May, 7 – 8:30pm, The Italian Bookshop (in The European Bookshop), 5 Warwick Street, London, W1B 5LU.
An evening of readings and discussion between Elvira Dones and Clarissa Botsford in both English and Italian. Wine and snacks provided.
- Celebrating International Writers with Elvira Dones, Chloe Aridjis, Hamid Ismailov, Andrés Neuman & Eva Salzman
Wednesday 21 May, 7:00pm, Working Men’s College Library, 44 Crowndale Road, London, NW1 1TR – (Nearest tubes Camden, Mornington Crescent)
An evening of readings with five exciting international authors at this popular literary salon.
Cash bar available.