The Diving Pool

Three Novellas

Yoko Ogawa; Translated by Stephen Snyder

Picador

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The first major English translation of one of contemporary Japan's bestselling and most celebrated authors

 

From Akutagawa Award-winning author Yoko Ogawa comes a haunting trio of novellas about love, fertility, obsession, and how even the most innocent gestures may contain a hairline crack of cruel intent.

A lonely teenage girl falls in love with her foster brother as she watches him leap from a high diving board into a pool--a peculiar infatuation that sends unexpected ripples through her life.

A young woman records the daily moods of her pregnant sister in a diary, taking meticulous note of a pregnancy that may or may not be a hallucination--but whose hallucination is it, hers or her sister's?

A woman nostalgically visits her old college dormitory on the outskirts of Tokyo, a boarding house run by a mysterious triple amputee with one leg.

Hauntingly spare, beautiful, and twisted, The Diving Pool is a disquieting and at times darkly humorous collection of novellas about normal people who suddenly discover their own dark possibilities.

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Book Excerpts

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THE DIVING POOL
It’s always warm here: I feel as though I’ve been swallowed by a huge animal. After a few minutes, my hair, my eyelashes, even the blouse of my school uniform are damp from the heat and humidity, and I’m bathed in a moist film that smells vaguely of chlorine.
Far below my feet, gentle ripples disrupt the pale blue surface of the water. A constant stream of tiny bubbles rises from the diving well; I can’t see the bottom. The ceiling is made of glass and is very high. I sit here, halfway up the bleachers, as if suspended in midair.

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Praise for The Diving Pool

"Yoko Ogawa is able to give expression to the most subtle workings of human psychology in prose that is gentle yet penetrating."--Kenzaburo Oe, Nobel Prize-winning author of A Personal Matter

 

"Three beautifully-drawn and genuinely eerie stories. Each one builds an image that you can't quite shake out of your mind."--Aimee Bender, author of The Girl in the Flammable Skirt

 

"What a strange and compelling little volume this is. Yoko Ogawa's fiction is like a subtle, psychoactive drug. Long after you read it, The Diving Pool will remain with you, shifting your vision, eroding your composure, raising questions about even the most seemingly conventional people you encounter. Her gift is to both reveal and preserve the mystery of human nature."--Kathryn Harrison, bestselling author of The Kiss

 

"Ogawa is original, elegant, very disturbing. I admire any writer who dares to work on this uneasy territory--we're on the edge of the unspeakable. The stories seem to penetrate right to the heart of the world and find it a cold and eerie place. There are no narrative tricks, but the stories generate a surprising amount of tension. You feel as if you’ve touched an icy hand."--Hilary Mantel, author of Beyond Black


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About the Author

Yoko Ogawa; Translated by Stephen Snyder

Yoko Ogawa's fiction has appeared in The New Yorker, A Public Space, and Zoetrope. Since 1988 she has published more than twenty works of fiction and nonfiction, and has won every major Japanese literary award.

Yoko Ogawa

Yoko Ogawa

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Available Formats and Book Details

The Diving Pool
Three Novellas
Yoko Ogawa; Translated by Stephen Snyder

Trade Paperback

Trade Paperback
Picador
January 2008
Trade Paperback
ISBN: 9780312426835
ISBN10: 0312426836
5 1/2 x 8 1/4 inches, 176 pages
$15.00

e-Book Agency

e-Book Agency
Picador
January 2008
e-Book Agency
ISBN: 9781429924955
ISBN10: 1429924950
176 pages
$9.99
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Picador

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