$19.95

Rabbit Island

Current Stock: 2
UPC: 9781949641097
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Authors: by Elvira Navarro (Author), Christina MacSweeney (Translator)
  • Publisher : Two Lines Press (February 9, 2021)
  • Language : English
  • Hardcover : 184 pages
  • ISBN-10 : 1949641090
  • ISBN-13 : 978-1949641097

Combining the gritty surrealism of David Lynch with the explosive interior meditations of Clarice Lispector, the stories in Elvira Navarro’s Rabbit Island traverse the fickle, often terrifying terrain between madness and freedom. In the title story, a so-called “non-inventor” conducts an experiment on an island inhabited exclusively by birds and is horrified by what the results portend. “Myotragus” bears witness to a man of privilege’s understanding of the world being violently disrupted by the sight of a creature long thought extinct. Elsewhere, an unsightly “paw” grows from a writer’s earlobe; an obese grandmother floats silently in the corner of a room.

These eleven stories from one of Granta’s “Best Young Spanish-Language Novelists” are psychogeographies of dingy hotel rooms, shape-shifting cities, and graveyards. They act as microscopes fixed upon the regions of our interior lives we often neglect, where the death of God and the failures of institutions have given way to alternative modes of making sense of the world. They are cracked bedroom mirrors. Do you like what you see?

Review

“In this impressionistic, dreamlike collection, Navarro, a Spanish writer, deploys surrealism to comic, haunting effect.” New York Times

“Navarro showcases her ability to lead her characters from relative normalcy into nightmare terrain in starkly elegant prose and with a winking sense of humor.” Publishers Weekly

“Set between the seemingly familiar and elusively surreal, Navarro's tales unsettle readers through oneiric landscapes… Navarro―adroitly anglophone-enabled by award-winning Christina MacSweeney―distinctly proves her inarguable facility with short fiction.” Booklist

“Full of colorful, precise descriptions and sharp insights into the mind and body, Elvira Navarro’s story collection Rabbit Island is inventive and atmospheric, arising where the everyday world ends and dreams begin.” Foreword Reviews (starred review)

Rabbit Island is a haunting masterwork. Dreamlike, the worlds presented in these stories feel at once familiar and darkly tilted, unsettling and unforgettable. Brilliantly atmospheric and thick with impending doom, Navarro’s prose is elegantly tense, inventive, and lush.” ―Kimberly King Parsons, author of Black Light

"On the farthest edges of radical honesty, Navarro discovers something surreal. Reading Rabbit Island is like spending a week at an abandoned hotel with rooms inhabited by haunted bunnies and levitating grandmothers. Dark, brilliant, and addictive." ―Sandra Newman, author of The Heavens

“Beneath the impeccable surface of Navarro’s ice-cold prose, dread and grief wrestle  in a territory of uncanny shadows. Like the work of many great fantasists before her―Robert Walser, Leonora Carrington, Witold Gombrowicz, Remedios Varo―Navarro takes alien landscapes and turns them into eerily apt mirrors of our most secret realities. Grimly comedic, deeply affecting, these stories are a necessary poison, one that revives instead of destroys, emboldens rather than deadens. In spite of all the ghosts, madnesses, nightmares, and grotesque transformations they are subject to, her characters manage to make their own maps, turning endings into beginnings, disgust into love, death to peace: Rabbit Island is a series of unforgettable journeys designed by a master cartographer.” ―Maryse Meijer, author of The Seventh Mansion

“The stories in Rabbit Island are as surprising and delightful as they come. Here there are no mundane worlds: wherever an Elvira Navarro story begins, it eventually leads to the uncanny borderlands between dream and nightmare, love and fear, science and mystery, all of which are, of course, reality itself.” ―Matt Bell, author of Appleseed

“Elvira Navarro is certainly an excellent storyteller, sharp and brave. Her prose sounds always precise, confident, intense. Among the authors of my generation in Spain, I think she is, doubtless, one of the most engaging." ―Andrés Neuman, author of Fracture

“This author’s literary talent is a natural gift…the subtle, almost hidden, true avant-gardist of her generation.” ―Enrique Vila-Matas, author of Mac's Problem and Vampire in Love

“Elvira Navarro is one of the most intelligent and daring writers in the Spanish-speaking world.” ―Daniel Saldaña París, author of Among Strange Victims

“Elvira Navarro is an enormously gifted and disturbing young writer with an unusual eye for the bizarre; she captures personal fragility with deceptively detached prose that stays with us like a scarring incision.” ―Lina Meruane, author of Seeing Red

Review

“Elvira Navarro is certainly an excellent storyteller, sharp and brave. Her prose sounds always precise, confident, intense. Among the authors of my generation in Spain, I think she is, doubtless, one of the most engaging." ―Andrés Neuman, author of Fracture

“This author’s literary talent is a natural gift…the subtle, almost hidden, true avant-gardist of her generation.” ―Enrique Vila-Matas, author of Mac's Problem and Vampire in Love

Elvira Navarro is one of the most intelligent and daring writers in the Spanish-speaking world.” ―Daniel Saldaña París, author of Among Strange Victims

“Elvira Navarro is an enormously gifted and disturbing young writer with an unusual eye for the bizarre; she captures personal fragility with deceptively detached prose that stays with us like a scarring incision.” ―Lina Meruane, author of Seeing Red

Review

“Navarro is one of Spanish literature’s most interesting contemporary writers.… A Working Woman represents a major leap forward in her work.” ―Perfil

“The book surprises the reader… Disconcerting in the best possible sense.” ―El Cultural

“The singular thing about this novel is…the narrative voice.” ―El País

About the Author

Elvira Navarro won the Community of Madrid’s Young Writers Award in 2004. Her first book, La ciudad en invierno (The City in Winter), published in 2007, was well received by the critics, and her second, La ciudad feliz (The Happy City, Hispabooks, 2013) was given the twenty-fifth Jaén Fiction Award and the fourth Tormenta Award for best new author, as well as being selected as one of the books of the year by Culturas, the arts and culture supplement of the Spanish newspaper Público. Granta magazine also named her one of their top twenty-two Spanish writers under the age of thirty-five. She contributes to cultural magazines such as El Mundo newspaper’s El Cultural, to Ínsula, Letras Libres, Quimera, Turia, and Calle 20, and to the newspapers Público and El País. She writes literary reviews for Qué Leer and contributions for the blog “La tormenta en un vaso.” She also teaches creative writing. She lives in France.

Christina MacSweeney received the 2016 Valle Inclan prize for her translation of Valeria Luiselli's The Story of My Teeth, and Among Strange Victims(Daniel Saldaña París) was a finalist in the 2017 Best Translated Book Award. Among the other authors she has translated are: Elvira Navarro (A Working Woman), Verónica Gerber Bicecci (Empty Set; Palabras migrantes/Migrant Words), and Julián Herbert (Tomb Song; The House of the Pain of Others). She is currently working on a second novel by Daniel Saldaña París and her translations of a short story collection by Julián Herbert will be published in 2020.