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Review: There’s No Such Thing As An Easy Job By Kikuko Tsumura

Translated from the Japanese by Polly Barton Published by Bloomsbury While I don’t know the complete shape of Japanese literature today, many Japanese books in translation have, for the past several years, been reflective of the frustrating, exhausting world their writers were born into. Most of these writers are inspiring women, exhausted and angered by …

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Review: Theatre of War by Andrea Jeftanovic

Translated from the Spanish by Frances Riddle Published by Charco Press One of 2020’s finest novels in translation, Theatre of War marks a lot of firsts. This is the first Chilean novel published by Charco Press; it’s the first Chilean novel I’ve ever read; and it’s my first experience with translator Frances Riddle. It’s also …

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13 Gripping & Inspirational Nonfiction Books

Over the course of the last decade or so, nonfiction has undergone a slow and gradual revolution, taking cues from the page-turning tone and immediacy of fiction to make itself more narrative, engaging, and exhilarating. We are now gifted with a wave of compelling, inspirational nonfiction. Every year, countless nonfiction books come out that prove …

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Review: The Pear Field by Nana Ekvtimishvili

Translated from the Georgian by Elizabeth Heighway Published by Peirene Press The Pear Field is a novel of juxtapositions. It is full of tragedy, but written with a calm joviality. It has a gothic tone but is populated by lovable characters, rather than ones you love to hate. It shocks and frightens you at one …

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11 Cultural & Unique Things to Do in York

What an incredible city York is. A place rich in Roman, Medieval, Tudor, and Victorian history. A city for bookworms and art-lovers. A friendly, warm town of ancient cobbled streets and strange, enigmatic places. We have so much to say about historic, haunted York. So, let’s start with the most unique things to do in …

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10 Classic Japanese Ghost Stories

The ghosts and demons (yokai) of Japanese folklore represent some of the most imaginative, diverse, and strange supernatural creatures anywhere in the world. Vengeful spirits and man-eating demons; haunted furniture and the ghosts of abandoned children. Japanese ghost stories are a deep well of fantastical, terrifying wonders. Here are ten such captivating Japanese ghost stories, …

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Kobo Abe: 3 Must-Read Surreal Novels

Where do you start reading an author like Kobo Abe? The post-war Japanese author and playwright has become known, most famously, as Japan’s answer to Franz Kafka. One difference between the two, however, is that Abe was able to finish his works. And of them, which ones are must-read novels? What we have here are …

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A Girl on the Shore: Beauty in Broken Things

Inio Asano is a mangaka best known for being one of the manga world’s smartest and boldest creators. His series Goodnight Punpun is an oft-touted masterpiece that taps into the tragedy of growing up lost and frightened. It’s a series that represents the literary highs which manga can (and often does) achieve. But if you …

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Review: Earthlings by Sayaka Murata

Earthlings is translated from the Japanese by Ginny Tapley Takemori | Published by Granta In 2018, the English translation of Convenience Store Woman, translated by Ginny Tapley Takemori, was published by Granta. The book had such an intense and profound effect on me, as a reader, that it remains somewhere in my top 5 novels …

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