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"Thanks, Herta Muller!" The Nobel prize lifts a small press

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Try to see it as a victory for the little guy. While there are plenty of US readers who would have rather seen the 2009 Nobel prize for literature go to John Updike or Joyce Carol Oates, somewhere in Nebraska a group of book lovers was cheering last week's selection of lesser-known Romanian novelist Herta Muller.

And with good reason. They would be the employees of the University of Nebraska Press, a tiny academic publisher now blessed twice by what you might call "the Nobel effect." The UNP is not only one of the few American presses to publish Muller in translation (they have an English-language edition of her book "Nadirs") but they had also published two translated versions of works by last year's Nobel prize winner, French writer J.M.G. Le Cl├ęzio.

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