Mandala Road by Masako Bando (trans. Wayne P. Lammers)
PL846.A256 A2 2013
In the present day, a young married couple, Asafumi and Shizuka are trying to start a new life, having had to move after losing their jobs. Following the end of World War II, Saya, a woman from a Malayan native tribe, is on her way to Japan with her seven-year-old son to find Rentarō, who was her wartime lover and the father of her child. Setting out alone on Mandala Road in two different time periods, Asafumi and Rentarō wake up one day having both entered a post-apocalyptic world, where the people seem to have mostly been wiped out by a mysterious “calamity” and the ones that remain are scarcely human. Asafumi, Rentarō, Saya, and Shizuka are all, in their own way, on a private journey to discover and reconcile themselves to the memories of violence, both seen and experienced, as they learn to live with a past that seems always to be too close behind them.
Clouds Above the Hill : a Historical Novel of the Russo-Japanese War by Shiba Ryōtarō
PL861.H68 S2513 2012
Clouds above the Hill is one of the best-selling novels ever in Japan, and is now translated into English for the first time. An epic portrait of Japan in crisis, it combines graphic military history and highly readable fiction to depict an aspiring nation modernizing at breakneck speed.
The Shadow of Things to Come by Kossi Efoui ( trans. Chris Turner)
PQ3989.2.E3535 O4313 2013
In an unnamed African nation, the people are subject to a state of perpetual warfare and to an Orwellian abuse of language that strips from language its meaning and renders life senseless. And in a bare room lit only by moonlight, a young man hides, waiting for the mysterious crocodile-men to come and help him escape from the violent tyranny of the state. While he waits, he tells his story.
The Village Indian by Abbas Khider (trans. by Donal McLaughlin)
PT2711.H54 V5513 2013
From Iraq via Northern Africa through Europe and back again, Abbas Khider blends the tragic with the comic, and the grotesque with the ordinary, in order to tell the story of suffering the real and brutal dangers of life as a refugee and to remember the haunting faces of those who did not survive the journey. The novel brings to life the endless cycle of illegal entry and deportation that defines life for a vulnerable population living on the margins of legitimate society.