About If You Follow Me
“I love, love, love IF YOU FOLLOW ME. It’s fearlessly honest, occasionally heartbreaking, and extremely funny, and I can’t recommend it highly enough.”
— Curtis Sittenfeld, New York Times bestselling author of Prep and American Wife
“Dear Miss Marina… First learn gomi law, second Japanese language, and third you can enjoy international friendship. This is like holding hands across a sea!”
And so begins If You Follow Me and our narrator Marina’s lessons in “gomi” (garbage) law, Japanese culture, and the workings of Shika, the small, rural Japanese town in which she is teaching English for one year. For Marina, Shika is more than just her home as a “temporary person.” It’s also an attempt to escape the reality that has followed her everyday since her father committed suicide. But as Marina comes to realize, in Japan, you can never really throw away your past.
Part coming-of-age, part fish-out-of-water story, If You Follow Me is seeped in the tension of being the outsider in an intimate community and the joy in finding that human nature is the same everywhere.
Malena Watrous is a graduate of Barnard and the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, She was recently a Stegner Fellow at Stanford where she’s currently a Jones Lecturer in fiction writing. Her Pushcart-nominated work has appeared in Story Quarterly, Glimmer Train, Triquarterly, The Massachusetts Review and Kyoto Journal. She also contributes to Salon.com and reviews books for the San Francisco Chronicle. She lives in San Francisco.
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Malena’s TLC Book Tours TOUR STOPS
Tuesday, March 9th: Dolce Bellezza
Thursday, March 11th: Life in the Thumb
Monday, March 15th: Raging Bibliomania
Wednesday, March 17th: Stephanie’s Written Word
Thursday, March 18th: nomadreader
Monday, March 22nd: Books and Movies
Wednesday, March 24th: Book Chatter
Tuesday, March 30th: BookNAround
Wednesday, March 31st: Bookstack