And the book ends there, a dream of grief, a lesson in life’s revenge on us, for the crime of living. All these characters sound the same because they are the same, one soul caught in the Museum of Torture, lost in the snow, strapped into the brace, watching everything fall apart, even the wings of angels. Her manuscript stolen or made up of blank pages, or both, its metaphors nevertheless persist in her mind, poisoning her like toxic fruit, colonizing her like maggots in the dead hamster, or the intestinal disease that killed the hotel dolphins. The images are surreal: the sealskin bag perfectly fitted to a human heart, the human tongue in a dead man’s lab coat pocket. They serve the highest purpose of surrealism, to enlarge and distort the truth so that we can finally recognize it.
Steven Axelrod reviews Yoko Ogawa’s revenge. [via Numéro Cinq]