A bossy child who lives under a white cloth near a t­ree; a schoolgirl who keeps doll’s brains in a desk drawer; an old man with two shadows, one docile and one rebellious; a diplomat no one has ever seen who goes fishing at an artificial lake no one has ever heard of.

These are some of the inhabitants of People From My Neighborhood. In their lives, details of the local and everyday—the lunch menu at a tiny drinking place called the Love, the color and shape of the roof of the tax office—slip into accounts of duels, prophetic dreams, revolutions, and visitations from ghosts and gods. In twenty-six “palm of the hand” stories—fictions small enough to fit in the palm of one’s hand—Hiromi Kawakami creates a universe ruled by mystery and transformation.

J-Book Club is online so you can join the conversation from wherever you are!

To register or learn more, email Amy Sherman at:jbookclubdc@gmail.com