Fiction from Around the World
Books in this online selection represent only a sliver of what we offer in the store. If you've got a particular book in mind and want to check on its availability, call us at 415-362-8193.

   
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The Sextine Chapel
Hervé Le Tellier
An interconnected series of playful stories on the expected and unexpected pleasures of sexual intimacy. The delightful and daring English-language debut of French author Hervé le Tellier is a series of short, intimately interconnected stories making up a lively user's manual to pleasure, relating the various liaisons of couples from...
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The Perpetual Motion Machine
The Story of an Invention
Paul Scheerbart
In the last days of 1907, the German novelist and exponent of glass architecture Paul Scheerbart embarked upon an attempt to invent a perpetual motion machine. For the next two and a half years he would document his ongoing efforts (and failures) from...
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Fatale
Jean-Patrick Manchette
Aimée Joubert, the central character in Fatale, is a matter-of-fact businesswoman killer. In only his third novel translated into Englisg (the two others published by City Lights), Manchette delivers a terse, immediate tale where Aimée deals the...
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The Solitude of Prime Numbers
A Novel
Paolo Giordano
"Mesmerizing...an exquisite rendering of what one might call feels at the subatomic level." -The New York Times A prime number is a lonely thing. It can only be divided by itself or by one, and it never truly fits with another. Alice and Mattia are...
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The Leg of Lamb
His Life and Works
Benjamin Péret
A foundational classic of Surrealist literature, The Leg of Lamb brings together the arch-Surrealist Benjamin Peret's short prose: a smorgasbord of automatic writing and fantastical narratives employing everything from the cinematic antics of Buster...
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The Scale of Maps
Belén Gopegui
A novel and its protagonist create one another, in a tale strung between the work of Cervantes and Nabokov.
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The Education of a British-Protected Child
Essays
Chinua Achebe
From the celebrated author of Things Fall Apart comes a new collection of autobiographical essays—his first new book in more than twenty years. Chinua Achebe's characteristically eloquent and nuanced voice is everywhere present in these seventeen...
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The Literary Conference
César Aira
New in the New Directions Pearls series: an extremely rich mad scientist attempts to clone a leading genius in a bid to take over the world. César is a translator who's fallen on very hard times due to the global economic downturn; he is also an...
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Self-Portrait Abroad
Jean-Philippe Toussaint
Even on holiday, sex and death are Jean-Philippe Toussaint’s constant companions... In Self-Portrait Abroad, our narrator—a Belgian author much like Toussaint himself—travels the globe, finding the mundane blended everywhere with the exotic: With his...
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Skylark
Deszö Kosztolányi
A little miracle of a novel, so full of humor and charm, yet so unsolvably sad. It's hard to express the pleasure I got from this book's wondrous empathy, gentle eccentricity, and pungent evocation of provincial Hungary. —Recommended by Matt, City Lights
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Everything Flows
Vasily Grossman
Everything Flows is Vasily Grossman's final testament, written after the Soviet authorities suppressed his masterpiece, Life and Fate. The main story is simple: released after thirty years in the Soviet camps, Ivan Grigoryevich must struggle to find a...
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The Unbearable Lightness of Being
A Novel
Milan Kundera
A young woman is in love with a successful surgeon, a man torn between his love for her and his incorrigible womanizing. His mistress, a free-spirited artist, lives her life as a series of betrayals—while her other lover, earnest, faithful, and good...
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A Time for Everything
Karl Knausgaard
“The writing glows with an intense awareness of the here and now, and loving observations of landscapes and objects...this is an extraordinary novel, and completely original.”—The Independent “The most original and promising Norwegian writer of his...
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In Other Rooms, Other Wonders
Daniyal Mueenuddin
Recommended by Paul, City Lights Books "The rural rootedness and gentle humour of R.K. Narayan with the literary sophistication and stylishness of Jhumpa Lahiri."—Financial Times Passing from the mannered drawing rooms of Pakistan's cities to the harsh..

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