Tinder Press has acquired ESCAPE ROUTES, a debut story collection from former bookseller and UEA graduate Naomi Ishiguro.
ESCAPE ROUTES is an exuberantly original collection which taps into a fascination with all things fairy tale, focusing on characters trapped by their own limitations or others’ expectations of them. Tinder Press Publisher Mary-Anne Harrington said, ‘What impressed me particularly about ESCAPE ROUTES was the way these wonderfully varied stories resonate together as a collection. There’s something delightfully fresh and contemporary about Naomi’s magical take on the world, like a kind of bittersweet Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. I’m incredibly excited to be launching her career as a writer here at Tinder Press.’
Naomi Ishiguro worked for two years as a bookseller and bibliotherapist at Mr. B’s Emporium in Bath, and studied for a Masters in Creative Writing at the University of East Anglia. ‘These stories really started from talking to customers every day at Mr B’s. I began to see how books become our “escape routes” out of the ordinary world – out of drudgery, mundanity, out of set ways of thinking and our own emotional limitations. This isn’t a book about books, but it’s definitely something I wrote for all the readers I talked to, who inspired me in showing me just how magical and important storytelling’s flights of imagination and empathy can be.’
Mary-Anne Harrington acquired British Commonwealth rights from Peter Straus at RCW. Tinder Press will publish in hardback, e-book and audio in February 2020.
Characterised by its own brand of pleasingly unsettling magic, Naomi Ishiguro’s ESCAPE ROUTES matches the inventiveness of David Mitchell with the fairy-tale allure of Angela Carter.
A space-obsessed child conjures up a vortex in his mother’s airing cupboard. A musician finds her friendship with a flock of birds opens up unexpected possibilities. A rat catcher, summoned to a decaying royal palace, is plunged into a battle for the throne of a ruined kingdom. Two newlyweds find themselves inhibited by the arrival in their lives of an outsized and watchful stuffed bear.
Whether snared in traps artfully laid for them, or those of their own making, the characters in Naomi Ishiguro’s delightfully speculative debut collection yearn for freedom and flight, and find their worlds transformed beyond their wildest imaginings.