Before Your Memory Fades

Title: Before Your Memory Fades Writer: Toshikazu Kawaguchi (translated by Geoffrey Trousselot) Publishing House: Picador Date of Publication: August 30th 2022 (first published September 2018) Rating: 5 stars ‘’I don’t like the idea of dying with regrets.’’ In the café Donna Donna in beautiful Hakodate, lives are unfolding as autumn approaches. A heartbroken daughter wants…

First Person Singular

Title: First Person Singular Writer: Haruki Murakami (translated by Philip Gabriel) Publishing House: Harvill Secker Date of Publication:  April 6th 2021 (first published July 2020) Rating: 2 stars ‘’But the whole neighbourhood was still and silent, as if the dense clouds above had swallowed up all sound.’’ Cream: A young man is invited to a…

The Sister Who Ate Her Brothers: And Other Gruesome Tales

Title: The Sister Who Ate Her Brothers: And Other Gruesome Tales Writer: Jen Campbell (illustrated by Adam de Souza) Publishing House: Thames & Hudson Date of Publication: November 23rd 2021 Rating: 5 stars “It just so happened that the gardener did know of a house with a thousand rooms. It sat on the top of…

Angela Carter’s Book of Fairy Tales

Title: Angela Carter’s Book of Fairy Tales Writer: Edited by Angela Carter, illustrated by Corinna Sargood Publishing House: Virago Date of Publication:  January 1st 2005 (first published 1992) Rating: 5 stars ‘’Little lady, little lady’’, said the boys, ‘’little Alexandra, listen to the watch, tick tick tick: mother in the room all decked in gold.’’…

You Are Eating an Orange. You Are Naked

Title: You Are Eating An Orange. You Are Naked Writer: Sheung – King Publishing House:  Book*hug Press Date of Publication: October 27th 2020 Rating: 5 stars ‘’I am now alone, in a non-place, surrounded by street signs with names that are only phonetics – empty signifiers.’’ Two young people find and lose one another across…

Love in Colour: Mythical Tales from Around the World, Retold

Title: Love in Colour Writer: Bolu Babalola Publishing House: Headline Date of Publication: August 20th 2020 Rating: 5 stars ‘You are a queen. You are Lorde, Angelou, Simone, Walker, Hooks, Davis, Morrison, Knowles, Fenty, Robinson-Obama. You will shake the world, you will move the earth, you will be audacious with your essence, you will take…

Life Ceremony

Title: Life Ceremony Writer: Sayaka Murata (translated by Ginny Tapley Takemori) Publishing House:Grove Press Date of Publication: July 5th 2022 Rating: 5 stars ‘’A hundred years later, what would our bodies be used for? Would we be chair legs or sweaters or clock hands? Would we be used for a longer time after our deaths…

Pepperpot: Best New Stories from the Caribbean

Title: Pepperpot: Best New Stories from the Carribean Writer: Various edited by Peekash Press Publishing House: Peekash Press Date of Publication:  March 17th 2014 Rating: 5 stars ‘’Here in the rocky haunts of the islanders themselves are landscapes where ‘’the rocks are sharper than a coconut vendor’s cutlass, and the waters lash with a vengeance,’’…

The Penguin Book of Christmas Stories

Title: The Penguin Book of Christmas Stories Writer: Various edited by Jessica Harrison Publishing House: Penguin Classics Date of Publication: October 29th 2020 Rating: 4 stars ‘’First, heavy, blinding snow that falls slowly from above. Then it turns to rain, forming a light wintery mist over the streets of Paris.   Garlands of holly and mistletoe…

Christmas Stories

Title: Christmas Stories Writer: Various edited by Diana Secker Tesdell Publishing House: Everyman’s Library Date of Publication: October 30th 2007 Rating: 5 stars ‘’The last day before Christmas had passed. A wintry, clear night came. The stars peeped out. The crescent moon rose majestically in the sky to give light to good people and all…

A Bedtime Full of Stories

Title: A Bedtime Full of Stories: 50 Folktales and Legends from Around the World Writer: Angela McAllister, illustrated by Anna Shepeta Publishing House: Frances Lincoln Children’s Books Date of Publication: November 9th 2021 Rating: 5 stars Fifty beautiful folk tales to be read before bed, to soothe your soul, to make you travel in lands…

The Mermaid of Black Conch

Title: The Mermaid of Black Conch Writer: Monique Roffey Publishing House: Peepal Tree Press Ltd Date of Publication: April 2nd 2020 Rating: 5 stars ‘’That morning David played her soft hymns he’d learnt as a boy, praising God. He sang holy songs for her, songs which brought tears to his eyes, and there they stayed,…

Strange Weather in Tokyo

Title: Strange Weather In Tokyo (original title: センセイの鞄) Writer: Hiromi Kawakami (translated by Allison Markin Powell) Publishing House: Granta Date of Publication: August 6th 2020 (first published 2001) Rating: 5 stars ‘’In the autumn there are dead leaves all over the place and in winter the bare branches are bleak and dreary.’’ A woman and…

Miss Brill

Title: Miss Brill Writer: Katherine Mansfield Publishing House: Penguin Classics Date of Publication: February 26th 2015 (first published 1920) Rating: 5 stars ‘’God forbid, my darling, that I should be a drag on your happiness.’’ Marriage a la Mode: The loving relationship of a young married couple changes when Isabel falls under the influence of…

Shoko’s Smile

Title: Shoko’s Smile (original title: 쇼코의 미소) Writer: Choi Eunyoung (translated by Sung Ryu) Publishing House: John Murray Press Date of Publication: August 19th 2021 (first published July 7th 2016) Rating: 5 stars “I dig my hands into the cold sand and gaze at the black, shimmering sea. It feels like the edge of the…

Hurricane Season

Title: Hurricane Season (original title: Tempradas De Huracanes) Writer: Fernanda Melchor (translated by Sophie Hughes) Publishing House: Fitzcarraldo Editions Date of Publication:  February 19th 2020  (first published May 12th 2017) Rating: 3 stars ‘’They called her the Witch, the same as her mother; the Young Witch when she first started trading in curses and cures,…

Earthlings

Title: Earthlings (original title: 地球星人) Writer: Sayaka Murata (translated by Ginny Tapley Takemori) Publishing House: Granta Date of Publication: September 29th 2020 (first published August 31st 2018) Rating: 5 stars ‘’Magical powers. I have to summon my magical powers. The power of darkness, the power of wind – any magical power will do, but I…

Things We Lost In the Fire

Title: Things We Lost In the Fire (original title: Las cosas que perdimos en el fuego) Writer: Mariana Enríquez (translated by Megan McDowell) Publishing House: Hogarth Press Date of Publication: February 21st 2017 (first published February 10th 2016) Rating: 5 stars ‘’The gaucho is good,’’ he said. ‘’But the other one isn’t.’’  He said it…

This One Sky Day

Title: This One Sky Day Writer: Leone Ross Publishing House: Faber & Faber Date of Publication: April 15th 2021 Rating: 5 stars ‘’When people die alone, without proper burial rites, the carcass wandered for years, rudderless, rotting and shrinking. They had all seen these ghosts, rebuilding their bodies with bits of rubbish, hanging on, half-maddened….