Mina's Matchbox

A Novel

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Pub Date 13 Aug 2024 | Archive Date 13 Aug 2024
Penguin Random House Canada | McClelland & Stewart

Description

From the International Booker Prize–shortlisted author of The Memory Police comes a hypnotic tale of friendship, family secrets, and coming of age set in 1970s Japan.

In the spring of 1972, after the death of her father, twelve-year-old Tomoko is sent by her mother to live for a year with her wealthy aunt and uncle. It is a year that will change her life.

Her aunt’s family lives in a magnificent colonial mansion surrounded by sprawling gardens and the remnants of an old zoo, where the family’s pet pygmy hippopotamus still resides. The family is as beguiling as their home, but beneath their sophistication and charm lie darker undercurrents that Tomoko struggles to understand—her aunt’s misery, her handsome uncle’s curious absences, his German mother’s unspoken experiences from the Second World War. At the centre of the family is Tomoko’s cousin Mina, a precocious but sickly girl who draws Tomoko into an intoxicating world full of secret crushes and elaborate storytelling, including the strange tales inspired by the illustrated matchboxes she collects beneath her bed. As the two girls share confidences and enthusiasms, encounter heartache, and have their eyes opened to the workings of the adult world, they build an enduring bond that will continue to mark their lives decades after this formative interlude.

Beautifully atmospheric, and rich with the mystery and magic of youthful experience, Mina’s Matchbox is a tenderly elegiac depiction of two girls poised at the brink of adulthood, and of a family on the edge of collapse.
From the International Booker Prize–shortlisted author of The Memory Police comes a hypnotic tale of friendship, family secrets, and coming of age set in 1970s Japan.

In the spring of 1972, after the...

Available Editions

EDITION Hardcover
ISBN 9780771019890
PRICE CA$35.00 (CAD)
PAGES 288

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