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book beginnings on Friday: Memoirs of a Polar Bear by Yoko Tawada, trans. by Susan Bernofsky

Thanks to Rose City Reader for hosting this meme. To participate, share the first line or two of the book you are currently reading and, if you feel so moved, let us know what your first impressions were based on that first line.

memoirs of a polar bear

I have a strange and interesting one to start off this weekend. The back of the book quotes the New Yorker on “Yoko Tawada’s magnificent strangeness.” I’m looking forward to it.

We begin:

Someone tickled me behind my ears, under my arms. I curled up, becoming a full moon, and rolled on the floor. I may also have emitted a few hoarse shrieks. Then I lifted my rump to the sky and slid my head below my belly. Now I was a sickle moon, still too young to imagine any danger.

Sweet, and strange. I’m game.

This quotation comes from an uncorrected advance proof and is subject to change.

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