This beautiful book was on sale at my local store. Since it had two of my beloved things on the cover – cat and books – I had to read it. Turns out, book is also handily sized, so it came with me to two of my long weekend trips in Europe. And it was a great book to carry around, here’s why.
This book’s protagonists are a tabby cat that talks and a young boy who has recently lost his grandfather, thereby inheriting an old and crumbly bookshop. The cat appears one day, out of nowhere, to present the quiet Rintaro of Natsuki Books with a challenge – to save books that are stuck in various labyrinths. These books have come unto the possession of people, who through good intentions or bad, aren’t able to care for books as they should. And so Rintaro must intervene.
What follows are the tales of the journeys themselves, this boy and this talking cat on their mission. The book forces us to think of our own relationships with books – those we own, those we read and those we love. Through introspection it makes us reveal what it is we value about books, and also a great deal about our own ego.
Of course, Rintaro has a lady friend, and she somehow gets embroiled in this tale too. It is very cute. I really loved reading this book. It has all the hallmarks of modern Japanese writing – a quiet protagonist, a cat, a moral somewhere in there and feelings you cannot quite put your finger on. And magic realism, which I love.
You might remember a recent review of a Holocaust based book that I put up. Go read it again. Here!
I’m very excited to announce that the author Matt Freese, who by the way, is a very interesting gentleman with many things to talk about, is going to stop by my blog. He will have written about a topic I have posted to him and will also be answering a few questions. The tour runs from January 12th- February 13th, 2015 and I will be participating in January, hurray! I really enjoy finding out from authors what makes them tick and I hope you lot will stop by too.
About the book: “A weirdly wonderful short story collection exploring the Holocaust from diverse perspectives in literary styles ranging from gothic and romantic to phantasmagoric.”
I Truly Lament: Working Through the Holocaust is a varied collection of stories: inmates in death camps; survivors of these camps; disenchanted Golems complaining about their designated rounds; Holocaust deniers and their ravings; collectors of Hitler curiosa (only recently a few linens from Hitler’s bedroom suite went up for sale!); an imagined interview with Eva Braun during her last days in the Berlin bunker; a Nazi camp doctor subtly denying his complicity; and the love story of a Hungarian cantor, among others.
Title: I Truly Lament: Working Through the Holocaust
Author: Mathias B. Freese
Genre: Literary Fiction
Formats: Paperback & eBook
Published by: Wheatmark
Pub. Date: Sept. 14, 2014
Number of pages: 252
Content Warning: 18+ for graphic violence
Purchase at: Amazon.com and Barnes&Noble.com
Other than that, good friends, Happy New Year 2015! Have a great one. And as always, thanks for sticking around in 2014 🙂
I am back!
Thank you for hanging around (once again!) and waiting for me to sort of my life (once again!). It is much appreciated and I am very grateful for the pieces of my life, like this online bit of mine, that doesn’t change. Those of you that have read this blog for long enough or know me personally, will know that I have moved around one time too many and it is not always easy. However, as I have always said, home is where my library card is addressed at!
Anyway, new place (new country, new continent), new job, new role, new office, new flat, new flatmate! Phew! Can you imagine everything changing at the same time? Don’t even get me started on bank accounts, income tax, doctors, public transport etc. Suffice it to say that my absence was, well, completely unintentional. If you’re worried, don’t be. I’m all right, most of the time. And hopefully, you’ll all come back and read along as I write about reading. Here’s to that! To wrap up, I’ll leave you with this photo of a space that I created to preserve my sanity. Heck, I have a cat, I’ll survive!