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All the Lovers in the Night

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Mieko Kawakami returns to the themes of womanhood and connection that she explored in her 2020 hit Breasts and Eggs with All the Lovers in the Night, translated by Sam Bett and David Boyd. The novel is a brilliantly rendered portrait of a single 30-something copy editor and the varied community of women that surrounds her. Kawakami’s protagonist Fuyuko is in a rut. Her work as a freelance proofreader is grating, and her personal life consists of getting tipsy in a shopping center. But she vows to make changes after realizing how isolated her existence is. While Fuyoko’s efforts to improve her crippling loneliness result in a romantic relationship with a physics teacher named Mitsutsuka, her more meaningful connections are with three women. These women give her newfound purpose—and lead her to make startling revelations about what it means to be alive. —Cady LangB

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