Running Away

Tom McCarthy writes:

. . . In Running Away the flow of time takes on a more proairetic character. Dispatched to Shanghai by Marie, the femme fatale with whom he wandered through the flickering Tokyo markets, the hero hands a package of whose contents he’s uncertain to a contact he knows nothing about, then is whisked off to Beijing by a second sexy woman, at which point the three of them (the contact has come along, package secreted in his shirt) are chased by police from bowling alley to building site to bar in a fast-paced action sequence with grand, universalist overtones. The effect, in terms of the prose, is quite hilarious – like a James Bond novel written by Beckett.

(LRB 11 February 2010)

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Jean-Philippe Toussaint, translated by Matthew B. Smith

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