Tuesday, 8 December 2009

Parkbench's First Full Translation an Entertainment Weekly 'Must'

Achtung Johnny Cash fans!

Parkbench translator Michael Waaler has brought German graphic artist Reinhard Kleist's prize-winning biography of Johnny Cash to new heights with the success of its English translation. Published by indie SelfMadeHero, the translation of Cash: I See A Darkness was launched in style with a party in the Institute of Contemporary Arts, London, sponsored by Chivas Regal.

Michael Waaler, a British translator living in Hamburg, specialises in translating graphic novels for publishers like Carlsen Verlag, Yen Press and TOKYOPOP. (Watch this space for news of his first German-language comic from Carlsen, A Kiss from the Dark from Carlsen, due out early next year.)

Predictably enough, coverage of Cash in the US has been great. It hit Entertainment Weekly's 'Must' list, and was included in the San Francisco Chronicle's comics gift guide. In the UK, Michael Faber called it
'a tour de force'
in the Guardian with a big ole Kleist drawing of the MIB himself, and Stephen M. Deusner in the Express Night Out called the graphic novel
'the ideal medium for Cash's biography ... Cash may be six years dead, but the Man in Black is alive and still kicking.'
But the Parkbench prize for press coverage goes to the Financial Times, the only paper to mention the translator. Ludovic Hunter-Tilney, a man with the enviable title of 'the FT’s pop critic', calls the book 'seductive'.

'Enough with the blurbs,' you say. 'It's a graphic biography, so what does it look like already?' Want visuals? Have a peek at Esquire for some choice spreads and check out a video interview with author Reinhard Kleist:

The Man in Black and White from SelfMadeHero on Vimeo.

Christmas is coming, folks. Just saying. Too lazy to buy it in your local indie? Order a signed copy from Forbidden Planet, or in Ireland from Books Unlimited.