Mr. K Released

Matéi Visniec

Mr. K Released

Matéi Visniec

Distributed for Seagull Books

Translated by Jozefina Komporaly
280 pages | 5 x 8 | © 2019
Cloth $24.50 ISBN: 9780857426482 Published March 2020 World sales rights except India
E-book $19.00 ISBN: 9780857426765 Published October 2019 World sales rights except India
Mirroring Romania’s drastic transition from totalitarianism to Western-style freedom in the late 1980s, Mr. K Released captures the disturbingly surreal feeling that many newly liberated prisoners face when they leave captivity. Employing his trademark playful absurdity, Matéi Visniec introduces us to Mr. K, a Kafkaesque figure who has been imprisoned for years for an undisclosed crime in a penitentiary with mysterious tunnels.
 
One day, Mr. K finds himself unexpectedly released. Unable to comprehend his sudden liberation, he becomes traumatized by the realities of freedom—more so than the familiar trauma of captivity or imprisonment. In the hope of obtaining some clarification, Mr. K keeps waiting for an appointment with the prison governor, however, their meeting is constantly being delayed. During this endless process of waiting, Mr. K gets caught up in a clinical exploration of his physical surroundings. He does not have the courage or indeed inclination to leave, but can move unrestricted within the prison compound, charting endless series of absurd circles in which readers might paradoxically recognize themselves.
 
Review Quotes
Foreword Reviews
"Mr. K Released is a delightfully absurd, surreal novel about the disorienting qualities of freedom. . . . an engrossing novel of ideas that is entertaining and challenging in its strangeness."
World Literature Today
"Both amusing and alienating, the variation on a theme that is Mr. K Released naturally raises questions for the contemporary reader in an increasingly troubled world, where the illusory nature of human liberty increasingly shows itself not to be a thing of the past."
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