‘Grandad! Ata! How did you even stay alive? How did you live to be a hundred in such good health and sound mind?’ my loved ones asked.
‘I’m surprised myself,’ I answered. ‘Probably the Almighty wanted you all to be born, and he had to keep me alive to drag me through the fire and ice of the godless people.’
– Bayangali Alimzhanov «A Hundred Years on the Steppe».
The work of this versatile writer from Kazakhstan has been recognized by the UK and is published by the famous British publisher Hertfordshire Press.
Bayangali Alimzhanov -a phenomenal poet, writer, playwright, bearer of the ancient nomadic tradition; an improviser, storyteller, the only non-Kyrgyz manaschi in the world; critic, satirist, film director and actor, children’s writer and poet, impressive for his talent and uniqueness. He is an Honored Figure of Kazakhstan, a member of the Eurasian Creative Guild, that writes in the Kazakh and Russian languages. He is credited with more than forty books that have received the love of readers and national recognition. B. Alimzhanov is the owner of 22 Grand Prix at aitys of akyns-improvisers. Twice he won the Grand Prix at the republican contests of zhyrshy storytellers. He was a prize winner at the International Manaschi Competition – a competition of storytellers of the Kyrgyz epos “Manas”. The author of four feature films and six documentaries.
Despite the success of his other works, only the novel “A Hundred Years on the Steppe” and the novels “Let Me Live!”, “Ablai Khan and His Batyrs”, written in Russian, were translated into English and published in London.
“A Hundred Years on the Steppe” is a story that is fascinating from the very beginning thanks to the first-person narrative, a special syllable that conveys the spirit of the last century, and a plot, based on the life experience of the older generation – the ancestors and countrymen of the author.
The publication of this book is an important step in introducing the the culture of Kazakhstan and its history to the English-speaking society.
Hertfordshire Press is an unique publishing house in terms of this ‘communication’ between countries – HP has already published 50 books of Kazakhstan’s authors.
Due to the focus of the Hertfordshire Press on uniting English-speaking readers around the world with the help of Eurasian literature, both teenagers and adults from different countries will be interested in this novel, since it contains stories that can evoke a response in any, despite the significant differences between cultures.
The translation of “A Hundred Years on the Steppe” was made by one of the members of the Eurasian Creative Guild, an experienced translator Jonathan Kampion. The editor of the novel is Caroline Walton, considered an extremely talented writer and translator in the UK.
Book presentations are going to be a part of the Literary Week in London on 1st -6th October and a part of the Open Eurasian Literature Festival and Book Forum in Madrid.