Countries Challenge

This isn’t really a challenge so much as a record – how many different countries have I read in the past year – (since 5/2015) and can I fill in the blanks where a book is missing?     Just for info I made an X on countries I know I’ve read books from prior years –  –  I’ll add the titles for books I read this year and into the future.  (I might go back and see what’s in my “Prior Reads”  but I insist on having a review for it on this site.)

I use the setting to determine where the book is from – (the author may or may not be from there at all) .   I’ve probably read more than one book from many of these countries –

** Some countries are missing – there are 196 countries in the world  and I’m shy a few dozen. They’re  listed at )  and I’ll add as needed –

The links are to my review –

Afghanistan –   The Taliban Cricket Club by Timeri N. Murari  (C)

Albania  – The File on H.  Ismael Kadare

Algeria –  The Stranger by Albert Camu


Argentina –  The Ministry of Special Cases by Nathan Englander   (A)

Australia  The Night Guest by Fiona McFarlane  (B)

Austria – The Hare with Amber Eyes by Edmund De Waal  (A)


Basque – ?

Belgium – The Expats by Chris Pavone



Botswana –  The Woman Who Walked in Sunshine by Alexander McCall Smith (A)

Brazil – Near to the Wild Heart by Clarice Lispector  (A)

Bulgaria- The Shadow Land by Elizabeth Kostova – (A)


Canada – Sweetland by Michael Crummey (B+)

Cape Verde


Chile- The House of the Spirits by Isabel Allende

China –  The Incarnations  by Susan Barker  (A)

Colombia –  One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Marquez Garcia

Congo – King Leopold’s Ghost by Adam Hochschild

Croatia –  Black Lamb and Grey Falcon by Rebecca West

Cuba – Telex From Cuba by Rachel Kushner

Czechoslovakia –  The Glass Room by Simon Mawrer

Denmark  – The Hanging Girl by Jussi Adler-Olsen  (crime)

Dominican Republic – The Feast of the Goat by  Mario Vargas Llosa  (A)

DR Congo  –  Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad

Egypt  Karnak Cafe by Naguib Mahfouz  (A)

El Salvador

England  Gate of Angels by Penelope Fitzgerald  (A-)


Equatorial Guinea


Ethiopia =  Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese

Finland – New Finnish Grammar by Diego Marani  (A)

France  The Crime of Sylvestre Bonnard by Anatole France  (B+)

Germany  The Reader by Bernhard Schlink

Ghana –  Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi

Greece Corelli’s Mandolin by Louis de Berniéres

Greenland – (Denmark but…)  The North Water by Ian McGuire


Haiti  The Farming of Bones by Edwidge Danticat

Hungary –  The Door by Magda Szabo

Iceland-  Reykjavik Nights by Arnaldur Indridason  (crime)

India The Strangler Vine  by M.J. Carter  (B)

Iran –   The Rose Hotel: A Memoir of Secrets, Loss and Love by Rahimeh Andalibian  (C)

Iraq  – Black Flags: The Rise of Isis by Joby Warrick

Ireland- Mrs Eckdorf in O’Neill’s Hotel by William Trevor (Ireland)  (B+)

Isle of Man – Safe House by Chris Ewan  (Crime)

Israel – In the Courtyard of the Kabbalist by Ruchama King Feuerman (B-)

Italy   The Neapolitan Quartet  (4) by Elena Ferrante  (A)

Ivory Coast

Jamaica –  A Brief History of Seven Killings by Marlon James

Japan – A Dictionary of Mutual Understanding by Jackie Copleton

Kenya – Infidel by  Ayaan Hirsi Ali

Kyrgyzstan-  Zero K  by Don DeLillo (A)

Lebanon  An Unnecessary Woman by Rabih Alameddine

Lesotho – In a Strange Room by Damon Galgut


Malaysia – Garden of the Evening Mists by Tan Twan Eng


Mauritius  – Desert by Jean-Marie G. LeClezio

Mexico –Umami by Laia Jufresa


Morocco – The Sheltering Sky by Paul Bowles



Netherlands:  The Edge of the World by Michael Pye  (B+)

New Zealand The Luminaries by Eleanor Catton  (A)


Nigeria The Fisherman by Chigozie Obioma  (A)

North Korea –  The Real North Korea by Andrei Lankov

Norway – My Struggle – Book 1 by Karl Ove Knausgaard  (A)

Pakistan  I Am Malala by Malala Yousafzia  (B-)

Palestine The Blue Mountain by  Meir Shalev (A+)

Papa-New Guinea – Euphoria by Lily King   (A)


Peru –  Aunt Julia and the Scriptwriter by Mario Vargas Llosa

Philippines – Cryptonomicon  by Neil Stephenson

Poland  –  Poland by James Michener

Portugal –  The Last Kabbalist of Lisbon by  Richard Zimler

Romania – The Passport by Herta Muller

Rwanda –  An Ice Cream War by William Boyd  (B-)

Russia –   Voices From Chernobyl by Svetlana Alexievich (A)


Saudi Arabia

Scotland Raven Black by Anne Cleeeves (Crime)


Serbia  The Exiled by Kati Hiekkapelto  (Crime)

Sierra Leone –  The Heart of the Matter by Graham Greene (?)


Somalia – Maps by Farah Nurruddin  (A)

South Africa – Agaat by Marlene van Nierkerk 

South Korea –  The Red Queen by Margaret Drabble

Spain  The Infatuations by Javier Marias  (A)

Sri Lanka – Anjil’s Ghost by Michael Ondajee



Sweden  – My Grandmother Asked Me To Tell You She’s Sorry by Fredrik Backman (C)

Switzerland  –  The Little Hotel by Christina Stead



Thailand –  The Queen of Patpong by Timothy Hallinan (Crime)

Trinidad/Tobago A House for Mr Biswas by V.S. Naipaul

Turkey –  Istanbul Passage by Joseph Kanon (Crime)

U.S.A.   Did You Ever Have a Family by Bill Clegg  (A)

Ukraine –  Everything is Illuminated by Jonathan Safran Foer


Uzbekistan   (The Silk Road?)


Vietnam –  The Sympathizer by Viet Thanh Nguyen

Wales A Child’s Christmas in Wales by Dylan Thomas


◦Zimbabwe  We Need New Names by Noviolet Bulawayo

Also see Biblioglobal for ideas  –