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KNOPF PUBLISHERS




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Salmonella Men on Planet Porno (Tasutaka Tsutsui)

A mix of imagination, satire, and humor, these stories by Yasutaka Tsutsui imagine the consequences of a world where the fantastic and the mundane collide. The opening story, "The Dabba Dabba Tree," details the hilarious side effects of a small conical tree that, when placed at the foot of one's bed, creates erotic dreams. In "Commuter Army," a sly commentary on the ludicrousness of war, a weapons supplier becomes an unwilling conscript in a war zone.


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Sputnik Sweetheart (Haruki Murakami)

A college student identified only as "K" falls in love with his classmate Sumire. But devotion to an untidy writerly life precludes her from any personal commitments - until she meets Miu, an older and much more sophisticated businesswoman. When Sumire disappears from an island off the coast of Greece, "K" is solicited to join the search party and finds himself drawn back into her world and beset by ominous, haunting visions.


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Villain (Shuichi Yoshida)

A woman is killed at a ghostly mountain pass in southern Japan and the local police quickly pinpoint a suspect. But as the puzzle pieces of the crime slowly click into place, new questions arise. Is a villain simply the person who commits a crime, or are those who feel no remorse for malicious behavior just as guilty? Moving from office parks and claustrophobic love hotels to desolate seaside towns and lighthouses, this dark thriller reveals the inner lives of men and women who all have something to hide.


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Wild Sheep Chase, A (Haruki Murakami)

It begins simply enough: a twenty-something advertising executive receives a postcard from a friend, and casually appropriates the image for an insurance company's advertisement. What he doesn't realize is that included in the pastoral scene is a mutant sheep with a star on its back, and in using this photo he has unwittingly captured the attention of a man in black who offers a menacing ultimatum: find the sheep or face dire consequences.


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Woman in the Dunes, The (Kobo Abe)

The Women in the Dunes combines the essence of myth, suspense, and the existential novel. In a remote seaside village, Niki Jumpei, a teacher and amateur entomologist, is held captive with a young woman at the bottom of a vast sand pit where, Sisyphus-like, they are pressed into shoveling off the ever-advancing sand dunes that threaten the village.


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