Magazine article New Internationalist

The Seamstress and the Wind

Magazine article New Internationalist

The Seamstress and the Wind

Article excerpt

The Seamstress and the Wind by César Aira, translated by Rosalie Knecht (And Other Stories, ISBN 978 1 908276 84 1)

While playing with his best friend in the small Argentinean township of Pringles, an 11-year-old boy disappears. His distraught mother Delia, the seamstress of this novel"s title, believes he has been taken to Patagonia and gives chase in a taxi. Her husband sets offafter her in his truck. He is pursued by a mysterious tiny blue car that keeps pace with him whatever speed he"s going.

What follows is, to put it mildly, unusual. Aira is a master of the unexpected, his narrative taking surreal twists and turns, capable of both delighting and infuriating the reader. Objects, as well as people, may vanish without warning. Everything changes, reality is fluid and dissolute. …

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