Earthlings : a novel

by Murata, Sayaka, 1979-

Format: Print Book 2020
Availability: Available at 12 Libraries 12 of 17 copies
Available (12)
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Brentwood Library Fiction FICTION Murata
Location  Brentwood Library
Collection  Fiction
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C.C. Mellor Memorial Library Fiction FIC Mur
Location  C.C. Mellor Memorial Library
Collection  Fiction
Call Number  FIC Mur
CLP - Allegheny Fiction FICTION Murata
Location  CLP - Allegheny
Collection  Fiction
Call Number  FICTION Murata
CLP - Beechview Fiction FICTION Murata
Location  CLP - Beechview
Collection  Fiction
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CLP - Homewood Fiction Collection FICTION Murata
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Carnegie Free Library of Swissvale Fiction Fic Mur
Location  Carnegie Free Library of Swissvale
Collection  Fiction
Call Number  Fic Mur
Monroeville Public Library Fiction MURATA SAYAKA
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Collection  Fiction
Mt. Lebanon Public Library Fiction MURATA Sayaka
Location  Mt. Lebanon Public Library
Collection  Fiction
Call Number  MURATA Sayaka
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Collection  Fiction
Call Number  FIC MURATA
Sewickley Public Library Fiction F MUR
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Collection  Fiction
Call Number  F MUR
Upper St. Clair Township Library Literary Fiction LITERARY MURATA Sayaka
Location  Upper St. Clair Township Library
Collection  Literary Fiction
Call Number  LITERARY MURATA Sayaka
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From the beloved author of cult sensation Convenience Store Woman , which has now sold more than one million copies worldwide and has been translated into thirty-three languages, comes a spellbinding and otherworldly novel about a woman who believes she is an alien

Sayaka Murata's Convenience Store Woman was one of the most unusual and refreshing bestsellers of recent years, depicting the life of a thirty-six-year-old clerk in a Tokyo convenience store. Now, in Earthlings , Sayaka Murata pushes at the boundaries of our ideas of social conformity in this brilliantly imaginative, intense, and absolutely unforgettable novel.

As a child, Natsuki doesn't fit in with her family. Her parents favor her sister, and her best friend is a plush toy hedgehog named Piyyut, who talks to her. He tells her that he has come from the planet Popinpobopia on a special quest to help her save the Earth. One summer, on vacation with her family and her cousin Yuu in her grandparents' ramshackle wooden house in the mountains of Nagano, Natsuki decides that she must be an alien, which would explain why she can't seem to fit in like everyone else. Later, as a grown woman, living a quiet life with her asexual husband, Natsuki is still pursued by dark shadows from her childhood, and decides to flee the "baby factory" of society for good, searching for answers about the vast and frightening mysteries of the universe--answers only Natsuki has the power to uncover.

Dreamlike, sometimes shocking, and always strange and wonderful, Earthlings asks what it means to be happy in a stifling world, and cements Sayaka Murata's status as a master chronicler of the outsider experience and our own uncanny universe.

Published Reviews
Booklist Review: "Akutagawa Prize--winning Murata (Convenience Store Woman, 2018), with her lauded, chosen translator Takemori--two short stories and now two novels thus far--for more societally defiant, shockingly disconnected, disturbingly satisfying fiction. At 11, Natsuki is already aware she doesn't fit into her family: "If I wasn't here, the three of them would make a perfect unit." Her closest connection is cousin Yuu, whom she sees only once a year when the extended family gathers at their grandparents' remote home to commemorate ancestors during Obon. The children mutually confess they're Planet Popinpobopia aliens, trapped in "The Factory" to mature into humanity-saving breeders. Natsuki, at least, has Piyyut, a magic-endowing Popinpobopia emissary (actually a stuffed toy hedgehog) who saves her from her predatory, pedophilic teacher. When the cousins find (inappropriate) comfort against the world, the adults harshly separate them. Reunion only happens 23 years later when Natsuki takes her unconventional husband to the ancestral home where Yuu has been sequestering. What happens is--well, yes--out of this world. Murata again confronts and devastates so-called "normal," "proper" behavior to create an unflinching exposé of society."
From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Publisher's Weekly Review: "Murata's unsettling, madcap 11th novel (after Convenience Store Woman) chronicles the nightmarish discontent of one girl amid the deadening conformity of modern Japanese society. Natsuki does not have it easy: her mom favors her sister, her teacher sexually abuses her, and her only friend is the stuffed hedgehog Piyyut, who tells her he's an alien from planet Popinpobopia. Natsuki looks forward to her family's yearly holiday at her grandparents' house in the mountains of Akishina, where she meets up with her like-minded cousin Yuu. But one year, Natsuki and Yuu are caught dabbling with sex and are not allowed to see one another again. Years pass, and Natsuki marries Tomoya, a man she doesn't sleep with or love romantically. They both, however, connect over their shared rage against "The Factory," their name for the society in which they are trapped and are expected to act as "components... that just keep on manufacturing children." After Tomoya is fired from his job, they flee to Akishina and find that Yuu has also returned. Portents come in the form of winter landslides and the brutal murder of Natsuki's former teacher by a stalker, and a horrific series of events ensues as Natsuki, Yuu, and Tomoya, believing they are not earthlings but aliens like Piyyut, resort to violence and depravity. The author's flat, deadpan prose makes the child Natsuki's narration strangely and instantly believable and later serves to reflect her relationship to Japan's societal anxiety. This eye-opening, grotesque outing isn't to be missed. (Oct.)"
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Additional Information
Subjects Identity (Psychology) -- Fiction.
Imagination in children -- Fiction.
Imaginary companions -- Fiction.
Cousins -- Fiction.
Extraterrestrial beings -- Fiction.
Magic realist fiction.
Psychological fiction.
Publisher New York :Grove Press,2020
Edition First Grove Atlantic hardcover edition.
Other Titles Chikyū seijin.
Contributors Takemori, Ginny Tapley, translator.
Language English
In English, translated from the Japanese.
Notes Translation of: Chikyu seijin.
Description 247 pages ; 22 cm
ISBN 9780802157003
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