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Mr. Kato Plays Family by Milena Michiko Flašar (Hardcover)

Mr. Kato Plays Family by Milena Michiko Flašar (Hardcover)

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Fiction - Literary - Family Life - Friendships

Translated by:  Caroline Froh


An eccentric second-lease-on-life novel for fans of A Man Called Ove and The Story of Arthur Truluv.

Mr Kato—a curmudgeon and recent retiree—finds his only solace during his daily walks, where he wonders how his life went wrong and daydreams about getting a dog (which his wife won’t allow). During one of these walks, he is approached by a young woman. She calls herself Mie, and invites him to join her business Happy Family, where employees act as part-time relatives or acquaintances for clients in need, for whatever reason, if only for a day.

At first reluctant, but then intrigued, he takes the job without telling his wife or adult children. Through the many roles he takes on, Mr Kato rediscovers the excitement and spontaneity of life, and re-examines his role in his own family. Using lessons learned with his “play families,” he strives to reconnect with his loved ones, to become the father and husband they deserve, and to live the life he’s always wanted.

Author Bio:

MILENA MICHIKO FLASAR was born in 1980, the daughter of a Japanese mother and an Austrian father. Her 2012 novel I Called Him Necktie was a bestseller in Austria, selling over 100,000 copies and winning both the Austrian Alpha Literature Prize and the Euregio Prize. In 2017, Flasar won the Niederösterreich Cultural Prize in Literature. She studied comparative literature at the University of Vienna, and currently is the literary fellow with the Austrian Federal Ministry for Education, Arts, and Culture.

Translater Bio:

CAROLINE FROH translates from German, with a fondness for Swiss-German prose. She holds an MFA in Literary Translation from the University of Iowa, where she was also a Provost's Postgraduate Visiting Writer.

“What an extraordinary novel this is! Utterly original, beguiling, and truthful in the deepest sense of the word.”
—Elizabeth Berg, New York Times bestselling author of The Story of Arthur Truluv

“An elegant ode to the fragile connections that heal us and help us forgive those we love the most.”
—Marjan Kamali, National bestselling author of The Stationary Shop

“A warm, kind-hearted book about life.”
Catharina Ingelman-Sundberg, international bestselling author of The Little Old Lady Who Broke All the Rules

“Flašar, an acclaimed author of German and Japanese descent, presents the tender story of a man who must reinvent himself after retirement....Readers will float along with the bemused Mr Kato through the dreamlike prose.”

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