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Bored with life and bullied by an overbearing mother, 17-year-old Mari finds a painful solace in the company of a translator of Russian, 50 years her senior. Yoko Ogawa’s “Hotel Iris,” beautifully translated by Stephen Snyder, deals with obsession, fetishism, loneliness and the multifaceted nature of love.

Written in a lyrical and sparse prose, the novel explores a summer in the life of three people inextricably drawn to one another yet destined to forever be apart. Mari works for her mother in a small hotel in a nameless seaside resort.

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