Publication Date: 14/03/2024 ISBN: 9781803288055 Category:

Catfish Rolling

Clara Kumagai

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
Publication Date: 14/03/2024 ISBN: 9781803288055 Category:
Paperback / Softback


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A dazzling debut. Magic-realism blends with Japanese myth and legend in an original story about grief, memory, time and an earthquake that shook a nation.

There’s a catfish under the islands of Japan and when it rolls the land rises and falls.

Sora hates the catfish whose rolling caused an earthquake so powerful it cracked time itself. It destroyed her home and took her mother. Now Sora and her scientist father live close to the zones – the wild and abandoned places where time runs faster or slower than normal. Sora is sensitive to the shifts, and her father recruits her help in exploring these liminal spaces.

But it’s dangerous there – and as she strays further inside in search of her mother, she finds that time distorts, memories fracture and shadows, a glimmer of things not entirely human, linger. After Sora’s father goes missing, she has no choice but to venture into uncharted spaces within the time zones to find him, her mother and perhaps even the catfish itself…

Stylish, accomplished and thought-provoking story-telling explores themes of identity, philosophy, science, ecology, life, loss and love. For 14+

Publisher Review

Mining philosophy, science fiction and Japanese mythology to craft a mature, compelling story of loss and tragedy, Kumagai spins the tale of a Japan fractured in time by an earthquake caused by an infamous monster * Waterstones The Books You Need to Read in 2023 * An outstanding debut, this is a unique and ambitious story of grief and coming of age, woven around a rich backdrop of Japanese folklore, culture and magical realism. * The Observer * Kumagai's exquisite debut moves effortlessly between lyrical reflections and contemporary teenage concerns * The Irish Times * Excellent, evocative and thoughtful with genuine depth... I feel as if I'm in the hands of a writer who knows what she's doing -- Nicola Yoon, bestselling author of Everything, Everything Sensational. Breathtakingly original and beautifully written. - Katya Balen, winner of the YOTO Carnegie Medal 2022 A beautifully written, engrossing story about love, grief, and the passing of time * Irish Times * An unforgettable debut... Kumagai's writing is elegant and consistently excellent, and her capacity for immersive world-building is incredibly impressive * Books Ireland * With this book, Kumagai establishes herself as a powerful voice in YA fiction. I cannot recommend highly enough... an exquisitely crafted story of love, loss and belonging...sings with myth, mystery and the quest for connection. - Deirdre Sullivan, author of Savage Her Reply This thought-provoking debut combines magical realism and Japanese myths with an exploration of grief, time and memory * The Bookseller * Part thriller, part speculative fiction, this incredible debut, about an earthquake in Japan that fractures time itself, is beautifully written and beautifully presented * North Norfolk Living * Sublime...a rewarding, thought-provoking read * Irish Independent *

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