The Well of Trapped Words by Sema Kaygusuz, translated by Maureen Freely
The Well of Trapped Words
Sema Kaygusuz, translated by Maureen Freely
With regions near the Bosporus descending into ever more grotesque misery, how wonderful to savour young Turkish writer Sema Kaygusuz’s fourth short story collection, The Well of Trapped Words, filled with the myths of a rich past and translated by the wonderful Maureen Freely, who also does the business for big hitters such as Orhan Pamuk. Kaygusuz is no novice – she has written four novels as well as the stories – and she handles her people, themes and genres with certainty and subtlety. Eschewing western minimalism, these stories comes clothed in fantastical colours – and sudden brutalities. Here be talking snakes, fierce grandfathers, stigmata, cheated wives, an army officer’s collapse after the death of a young soldier he’s just abused, and what it’s like when your mum, filled with fear, starts screaming at you about anal sex. I loved every page.