Join JASH at Brazos Bookstore for a reading from Kelly Luce's debut novel PULL ME UNDER.
PULL ME UNDER is a psychological thriller set in Tokushima that tells the story of Rio Silvestri, who, when she was twelve years old, fatally stabbed a school bully. Rio, born Chizuru Akitani, is the Japanese American daughter of the revered violinist Hiro Akitani—a Living National Treasure in Japan and a man Rio hasn’t spoken to since she left her home country for the United States (and a new identity) after her violent crime. Her father’s death, along with a mysterious package that arrives on her doorstep in Boulder, Colorado, spurs her to return to Japan for the first time in twenty years. There she is forced to confront her past in ways she never imagined, pushing herself, her relationships with her husband and daughter, and her own sense of who she is to the brink.
The novel’s illuminating and palpably atmospheric descriptions of Japan and its culture, as well its elegantly dynamic structure, call to mind both Ruth Ozeki’s A TALE FOR THE TIME BEING and David Guterson’s SNOW FALLING ON CEDARS. PULL ME UNDER is gripping, psychologically complex fiction—at the heart of which is an affecting exploration of home, self-acceptance, and the limits of forgiveness.
The Japan Times has praised both PULL ME UNDER and Luce's collection of stories, THREE SCENARIOS IN WHICH HANA SASAKI GROWS A TAIL, saying "Luce manages to effortlessly capture both what it’s like to be a foreigner in Japan and to write in a believable way from the perspective of a native." Read Suzanne Kamata's review of PULL ME UNDER here.
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