Magnificently strange. Tawada is reminiscent of Nikolai Gogol, for whom the natural situation for a ghost story was a minor government employee saving up to buy a fancy coat, the natural destiny of a nose to haunt its owner as an overbearing nobleman.
— Rivka Galchen - New York Times Magazine
What is true of Hiruko, Tawada suggests, is true of everyone from the harmless Nanook to an ultranationalist called Breivik: Our national identities are at bottom simulacra, copies of originals that no longer exist, if they ever did.
— Ryan Ruby - The New York Times
Wonderful—what is truly affecting is Tawada’s language, which jumps off the page and practically sings.
— Juan Vidal - NPR
Threats abound—a changing climate, terrorism, and hostile political structures create danger and uncertainty—but these characters carry within themselves the seeds of a possible new world. Yoko Tawada’s Scattered All Over the Earth
is a cheerful dystopian novel that celebrates inventiveness, possibilities, and human connections.
— Foreword Reviews
Tawada expands upon the themes of language, immigration, globalization, and authenticity which underpin this slyly humorous first installment of a planned trilogy.
— Kirkus, Starred Review
Tawada slyly interrogates shifting (disappearing) borders and populations, native (invented) identities, assumptions, and adaptations. Her most frequent translator, Mitsutani, brilliantly ciphers Tawada’s magnificently inventive wordplay.
Playful and deeply inventive.
— Julian Lucas - The New Yorker
“Monet’s colors change with each brushstroke, yet his landscapes appear as a whole,” Knut reflects, and Ms. Tawada’s characters are similarly impressionistic: mobile, protean and evanescent, whirled together in a manner that can seem insubstantial but combines to form a vision of beauty and calm.
— Sam Sacks - The Wall Street Journal
Reading Yoko Tawada is a marvel…Scattered All Over the Earth
is a reflection on language, migration and identity that manages to be entirely unpredictable.
— Declan Fry - ABC (Australia)
For a book about the end of the world as we know it, Yoko Tawada’s Scattered All Over the Earth
is awfully cheery… [I]t’s possible to not understand someone even when you speak the same language, and to use different words but still recognize each other well.
— Eve Sneider - Wired
Tawada’s satirical tone and flirtation with sci-fi are intensely original.
— Julia Kornberg - Bookforum
This dystopian novel is riveting, bizarre as can be, and like nothing else I've ever read. I'm terrified not enough people will read it.
— Kamil Ahsan - NPR
Reading Tawada you feel her subtle authorial presence, simultaneously guiding the reader ashore and casting us out to sea; paradoxically, both lead to a single destination. Where do we—along with Hiruko, Knut, Akash, Tenzo, Nora and Susanoo—end up? It can only be described as somewhere soft and strange and new.
— Matthew Janney - Financial Times
The world is close to our own, suggesting that soon our boundaries will radically change. Tawada reminds us that we, too, might become refugees from lands that no longer exist—obliterated by nuclear mishaps, rising water levels, or arbitrary lines drawn in history textbooks.
— Emma Heath - Cleveland Review