The hotel dated from the last years of Communism: a sleek modern building of the sort built all over the world, on the main square, very tall, towering by many storeys over the city’s roof tops. Josef settled into his seventh-floor room and went to the window. It was seven in the evening, dusk was…
Top Reads 2021
‘It’s no good joining an existing cult, you have to start one yourself.’
A short story by Japanese author Sayaka Murata, translated by Ginny Tapley Takemori, who also brought us Convenience Store Woman and Earthlings.
Have You Met Husband?
‘The oysters were her idea, a way of catching me off guard. I accidentally said yes.’
A story by Amy Silverberg.
‘I often had head lice as a child.’
Memoir by A.K. Blakemore, author of The Manningtree Witches.
A Bleed of Blue
‘I was trying simultaneously to numb the grief I felt and to burrow into that grief, so I could stand in it.’
On love, its absence and Joni Mitchell’s Blue album.
‘I want the poem to destroy time. / What are the ceremonies of forgetting?’
Nick Laird’s elegy for his father, Alastair Laird, who died of Covid-19.
Translated by Linda Asher
Linda Asher is the former fiction editor at The New Yorker. She has translated Milan Kundera, Georges Simenon and Victor Hugo from French into English. She is the recipient of the Chevalier of the Order of Arts and Letters of the French Republic.More about the translator →