Edge

Crawling at Night

Check out the first novel by Nani Power, who, among other things, has worked as a chef in a Japanese restaurant and as a sandwich seller on the beaches of Rio de Janeiro. She graduated from Bennington College, as well as attended L’Ecole des Beaux-Arts Americaines in France on a painting fellowship, and Crawling at Night is deeply erotic and sensual, her prose diffused with sexy lyricism and emotive poetry (she writes: “Ito’s brain lays suspended in a Jell-O mold of clipped old memories and muffled voices, jettisoning him across oceans with the speed of blood currents.”) Ito is a lonely, timid sushi chef in Manhattan and recites haiku as he looks over shopping lists, reading pornographic comics at night when he’s alone in his bedroom as he fantasizes about Marianne, the mislaid, alcoholic waitress he works with at Chelsea sushi bar. Throughout the story, Ito is haunted by flashbacks of his dead wife he betrayed back in Japan with his adored mistress, Xiu-Xiu. Marianne has promised herself to get back the child she left behind almost fifteen years ago, but instead sinks into a seamy lagoon of alcohol and sex with strangers. As Power paints a dark cityscape and exposes the sordid underbelly of the urban gloom-in seedy, late-night Chinatown clubs, behind the walls of small downtown studio apartments, inside closed restaurants where the rustling sounds of ice cubes in vodka is familiar-she divulges the insatiable cravings of scarred, self-destructive humans whose lives interlay as the agony of loneliness in a big city becomes intolerable. Power provides much insight into her characters and is well able to narrate in each protagonist’s individual voice when she needs to. For instance, an Asian woman complains in her crackled English: “I don’t understand you men not know where your wife be, how can man not know where wife is, in my time this bad [..], you see I always said to husband, Husband, I’m going market or Husband, I’m going to doctor, you know.” The reader becomes interlaced in Power’s intimate portrayal of two marred souls and blemished hearts, but the author doesn’t concede to an ending with a perfect-world scenario and is well aware of the flaws and imperfections in life that bear our existence as humans.

~Omar Sommereyns

September 27, 2002

Reporters

The Miami Hurricane

Student newspaper at the University of Miami


Around the Web
  • Miami Herald
  • UM News
  • HurricaneSports

Either the Miami Hurricanes get a collective adrenaline rush from heart-palpitating fourth quarters, ...

University of Miami men’s basketball coach Jim Larrañaga, his face showing the strain of an ongoing ...

The No. 8 Hurricanes,  20 1/2-point favorites over next opponent North Carolina, are still one of on ...

Kudos to the two newest Atlantic Coast Conference Players of the Week: tight end Christopher Herndon ...

Mark Richt is not overly concerned with depth. Not when the eighth-ranked Miami Hurricanes (6-0, 4-0 ...

A University of Miami Ph.D. student in the Department of History sheds light on the dark history of ...

Univeristy of Miami’s Wynwood Art Gallery holds its annual faculty exhibition featuring thought-prov ...

From a game simulating how whales navigate to a tribute to Ella Fitzgerald, the U showcased some of ...

A new mobile game called Blues and Reds, now available worldwide, aims to help researchers study int ...

A major Lancet Commission report, a three-year project headed by UM’s Professor Felicia Knaul and co ...

The Hurricanes may be young, but they have the talent and poise to make a deep run in March. ...

Miami tight end Christopher Herndon and linebacker Michael Pinckney were among those recognized with ...

As a Hurricane Club member, you are invited to participate in the 25th Annual University of Miami Ha ...

The Miami women's tennis team wrapped up play Sunday the ITA Southeast Regional Championships P ...

The Hurricanes grabbed four interceptions and another ACC victory as they defeated Syracuse, 27-19, ...

TMH Twitter Feed
About TMH

The Miami Hurricane is the student newspaper of the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Fla. The newspaper is edited and produced by undergraduate students at UM and is published weekly in print on Tuesdays during the regular academic year.