The Singularity (Paperback)
The Singularity by Karam is a gut wrenching look at immigration and loss. A pregnant woman watches a mother grieve her lost child, and she must face her own losses. Karam connects these stories in a tantalizing narrative. The writing is lyrical and tugs at the depths of the heart, finding corners to nestle in. Child loss accompanies loss of home for the refugees of the unnamed coastal town. With constant comments from their white friends, coworkers, and case workers, the pregnant woman reflects on losing childhood. The Singularity is haunting and unforgettable.— Nikita
Lyrical and devastating, The Singularity is a breathtaking study of grief, migration, and motherhood from one of Sweden's most exciting new novelists.In an unnamed coastal city filled with refugees, the mother of a displaced family calls out her daughter's name as she wanders the cliffside road where the child once worked. The mother searches and searches until, spent from grief, she throws herself into the sea, leaving her other children behind. Bearing witness to the suicide is another woman--on a business trip, with a swollen belly that later gives birth to a stillborn baby. In the wake of her pain, the second woman remembers other losses--of a language, a country, an identity--when once, her family fled a distant war.Balsam Karam weaves between both narratives in this formally ambitious novel and offers a fresh approach to language and aesthetic as she decenters a white European gaze. Her English-language debut, The Singularity is a powerful exploration of loss, history, and memory--an experience akin to "drinking directly from a flood of tears" (Aftonbladet).
About the Author
Balsam Karam (b. 1983) is of Kurdish ancestry and has lived in Sweden since she was a young child. She is an author, librarian, and university lecturer, and made her literary debut in 2018 with the critically acclaimed Event Horizon, which was shortlisted for the Katapult Prize. The Singularity was shortlisted for the August Prize and is her second novel, published in Sweden in 2021.Saskia Vogel is the author of Permission and the translator of over twenty Swedish-language books. She was awarded the Berlin Senate Endowment for Non-German Literature and was a finalist for the PEN Translation Prize. She worked on The Singularity as part of her translation residency at Princeton University. From Los Angeles, she now lives in Berlin.