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Memory Police Reviews

Memory Police by Yoko Ogawa, Stephen Snyder

The Memory Police

Yoko Ogawa, Stephen Snyder

Score pending

1 review

Category: Thrillers, Fiction
Imprint: Harvill Secker
Publisher: Vintage Publishing
Publication date: 15 Aug 2019
ISBN: 9781846559495

It can be burned in the garden, thrown in the river or handed over to the Memory Police. For some reason, he doesn't forget, and it's becoming increasingly difficult for him to hide his memories.The Memory Police is a beautiful, haunting and provocative fable about the power of memory and the trauma of loss, from one of Japan's greatest writers.

4 stars out of 5
Alex Clark
20 Aug 2019

"Ogawa exploits the psychological complexity of this bizarre situation to impressive effect,"

A work of fiction that sets itself such stringent boundaries and problems of internal logic (if the inhabitants of the island have their concepts of items entirely wiped from their sensibilities, how are they able to name them? How does a milliner know what he once was when hats have disappeared?) must eventually reach a reckoning. Ogawa brings hers about in a deeply unsettling fashion, plunging her imaginary world into entropy and post-apocalyptic decay. There are obviously parallels between the society she describes and those similarly intolerant of collective memory and will, but her achievement is to weave in a far more personal sense of the destruction and distortion of the psyche.

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