What is BookBlast?

BookBlast® Ltd is a creative company (est. 1997) with a mission to foster cultural understanding by breaking or relaunching quality writing and myriad voices from around the world into the mainstream.

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BookBlast Ltd has been renovated and reimagined over the years as the publishing landscape has changed.

Today, the BookBlast® portfolio of book businesses comprises:
Fr-En translation services;
A Legacy Agency managing various literary estates;
A digital publishing arm;
Bespoke campaigns for the book trade;
BookBlast® Diary & Podcast.

BookBlast Diary launched eight years ago to celebrate independent thinking and international literature. Consider it as a virtual book club, with a growing community of devotees who love reading and genuine good writing that is the antithesis of soundbite culture. They number book industry insiders, influencers, booksellers, book buyers, librarians, journalists, bloggers, readers, writers and educators based primarily in the UK, France and US.

The BookBlast 10×10 Tour showcased independent trade publishing around the regions of England in association with Waterstones.

The BookBlast Podcast series, Bridging the Divide: Translation and the Art of Empathy featured award-winning authors from across Europe.

Turn the page, travel the globe with BookBlast!

Contributors to the BookBlast Diary include: Georgia de Chamberet, writer, translator, anthologist, editor and founder of BookBlast Ltd, with thirty years of experience in independent publishing and literary translation; Sharif Gemie, retired lecturer in Modern & Contemporary History and co-author of The Hippie Trail: A HistoryAndrew McDougall translator from Portuguese and Spanish; Lucy Popescu, arts critic, writer and editor with a background in human rights; C. J. Schüler, journalist and cultural historian specialising in European literature, travel and the arts; Henrietta Foster, freelance producer-director at BBC TV.

BookBlast & The Bodleian, Oxford

bookblast.com went live in 2000. It was selected by the curators of Bodleian Electronic Archives & Manuscripts, Bodleian Libraries, Oxford, in March 2015, as being of lasting research value & worthy of permanent preservation in the Web Archive of the Bodleian Libraries. BookBlast® was one of the first UK-based writers’ agencies to adopt online technology.

BookBlast® — the backstory

1996: Georgia de Chamberet leaves Quartet Books where, as a Senior Editor specialising in translation, she signed up and edited Annie Ernaux/Tanya Leslie (Nobel 2022), Tahar Ben Jelloun/Alan Sheridan, Simon Leys (Pierre Ryckmans)/Patricia Clancy – winner of the Independent Award for Foreign Fiction in 1992 with The Death of Napoleon, among others.
1997: Dubbed “L’enfant terrible of British publishing” by Le Figaro newspaper, Georgia founds BookBlast Ltd, literary agency.
1998: Landmark publication, Empire Windrush: Fifty Years of Writing About Black Britain, (ed.) Onyekachi Wambu.
1999: Landmark publication, XCiTés: the Flamingo Book of New French Writing, showcasing a new generation of French writers unpublished and unknown in English at the time — Frédéric Beigbeder, Tonino Benacquista, Virginie Despentes, Michel Houellebecq, Abdourahman Waberi among them.
2000: Landmark publication, Le Foot: The Legends of French Football (ed,) Christov Ruhn, featuring a wide range of contributors from both sides of the Channel united by their passion for the most popular sport on the planet — David Baddiel, Will Buckley, Tam Dean Burn, Marcel Desailly, Michel Platini, Salman Rushdie & Irvine Welsh among them.
2000: The first BookBlast website goes live.
2005: Georgia is a founding committee member of English PEN’s Writers in Translation programme, alongside Susie Nicklin, Julian Evans and others.
2009: BookBlast® becomes a registered trademark in the UK (Reg.No: 2504188) & the USA (Reg.No: 3,714,430).
2015: bookblast.com is selected by the curators of Electronic Archives and Manuscripts at the Bodleian Libraries, Oxford, as being of lasting research value and is catalogued in their digital archives.
2016: The BookBlast Celebrates Independent Publishing campaign is launched, providing a space for authors, translators, publishers, and readers to connect with each other in a variety of ways.
2018: The BookBlast 10×10 Tour, A Celebration of Independent Publishing, in association with Waterstones.
2018: A judge for the Saif Ghobash Banipal Prize for Arabic Literary Translation in the thirteenth year of the prize alongside Pete Ayrton, Fadia Faqir and Sophia Vasalou.
2020: The BookBlast Podcast series, Bridging the Divide: Translation and the Art of Empathy.

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