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Little Eyes
by Samanta Schweblin




Overview -
LONGLISTED FOR THE 2020 MAN BOOKER INTERNATIONAL PRIZE

A NEW YORK TIMES NOTABLE BOOK OF THE YEAR

Her most unsettling work yet -- and her most realistic. --New York Times

Named a Best Book of the Year by The New York Times, O, The Oprah Magazine, NPR, Vulture, Bustle, Refinery29, and Thrillist

A visionary novel about our interconnected present, about the collision of horror and humanity, from a master of the spine-tingling tale.

They've infiltrated homes in Hong Kong, shops in Vancouver, the streets of in Sierra Leone, town squares in Oaxaca, schools in Tel Aviv, bedrooms in Indiana. They're everywhere. They're here. They're us. They're not pets, or ghosts, or robots. They're real people, but how can a person living in Berlin walk freely through the living room of someone in Sydney? How can someone in Bangkok have breakfast with your children in Buenos Aires, without your knowing? Especially when these people are completely anonymous, unknown, unfindable.

The characters in Samanta Schweblin's brilliant new novel, Little Eyes, reveal the beauty of connection between far-flung souls--but yet they also expose the ugly side of our increasingly linked world. Trusting strangers can lead to unexpected love, playful encounters, and marvelous adventure, but what happens when it can also pave the way for unimaginable terror? This is a story that is already happening; it's familiar and unsettling because it's our present and we're living it, we just don't know it yet. In this prophecy of a story, Schweblin creates a dark and complex world that's somehow so sensible, so recognizable, that once it's entered, no one can ever leave.

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More About Little Eyes by Samanta Schweblin

 
 
 

Overview

LONGLISTED FOR THE 2020 MAN BOOKER INTERNATIONAL PRIZE

A NEW YORK TIMES NOTABLE BOOK OF THE YEAR

Her most unsettling work yet -- and her most realistic. --New York Times

Named a Best Book of the Year by The New York Times, O, The Oprah Magazine, NPR, Vulture, Bustle, Refinery29, and Thrillist

A visionary novel about our interconnected present, about the collision of horror and humanity, from a master of the spine-tingling tale.

They've infiltrated homes in Hong Kong, shops in Vancouver, the streets of in Sierra Leone, town squares in Oaxaca, schools in Tel Aviv, bedrooms in Indiana. They're everywhere. They're here. They're us. They're not pets, or ghosts, or robots. They're real people, but how can a person living in Berlin walk freely through the living room of someone in Sydney? How can someone in Bangkok have breakfast with your children in Buenos Aires, without your knowing? Especially when these people are completely anonymous, unknown, unfindable.

The characters in Samanta Schweblin's brilliant new novel, Little Eyes, reveal the beauty of connection between far-flung souls--but yet they also expose the ugly side of our increasingly linked world. Trusting strangers can lead to unexpected love, playful encounters, and marvelous adventure, but what happens when it can also pave the way for unimaginable terror? This is a story that is already happening; it's familiar and unsettling because it's our present and we're living it, we just don't know it yet. In this prophecy of a story, Schweblin creates a dark and complex world that's somehow so sensible, so recognizable, that once it's entered, no one can ever leave.

 

Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780525541363
  • ISBN-10: 0525541365
  • Publisher: Riverhead Books
  • Publish Date: May 2020
  • Page Count: 256
  • Dimensions: 8.1 x 5.1 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 0.75 pounds


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BookPage Reviews

Little Eyes

In the thought experiment of Little Eyes, Samanta Schweblin’s latest novel, kentukis are the latest craze. They’re motorized, furry pets, like anonymous webcams on wheels.

An explanation of how kentukis work emerges slowly, mysteriously, encounter by encounter. If you purchase a kentuki, you become its “keeper.” Someone else will purchase the rights to be the “dweller,” operating the toy and observing the keeper’s environment through the kentuki’s lens. Kentukis can be one of a handful of endearing animals, from dragons to moles. The people behind them, too, are a host of believable characters, ranging from preteen boys and teenage girls to retired people. But the kentukis’ too-good-to-be-true cuteness, coupled with the ordinary lives of the people who interact with the toys, foretells horrifying consequences.

Drawn in quotidian elegance, the novel is a string of nonstop, colorful vignettes that follow a handful of international kentuki connections: Peru-Germany, Italy-Norway, Croatia--Brazil, Sierra Leone-Hong Kong, among others. The randomness of the assorted connections breeds unpredictability. Kentukis can move on their own, but only so far, and not on rough terrain. They make noise, not speech. Many connections create ways to communicate, but some communication becomes unwanted, and some develops into co-dependence. Some keepers grow fearful or wary of their kentukis, while some dwellers are set off by their keepers’ strange behavior. The links spread across the globe like a sticky web.

Kentukis raise real-world questions about privacy and increasingly invasive, animated technology. Like Furbies or clowns, kentukis are both adorable and horrible. They’re reminders of basic human needs and vulnerabilities. They’re objects of obsession and companionship, and yet they can also be too close for comfort.

If Schweblin’s sci-fi thriller Fever Dream made sleep difficult, Little Eyes raises the unease quotient. The book seems to watch viewers creepily as it unfolds. 

 

BAM Customer Reviews