Anna Moschovakis


An Earthquake is A Shaking of the Surface of the Earth

A Novel

A formidable, uncanny, and utterly unique new work from accomplished novelist and poet, Anna Moschovakis, whose translation of David Diop’s Frêre d’âme (At Night All Blood Is Black, Pushkin and FSG) won the 2021 International Booker Prize

In An Earthquake Is a Shaking of the Surface of the Earth, an unnamed narrator struggles to regain the ability to walk after a sudden seismic event has rendered unpredictable shifts and undulations in the ground. Convinced of a need to find and kill her younger housemate, Tala, who has disappeared, the narrator struggles physically and psychically to contend with her homicidal task in the wake of failure as a Method actor. The narrator travels back in time and out into a dust-covered, shadowy city, where she is targeted by charismatic “healing” ideologues with uncertain motives. Torn between a paranoid suspicion of internalized, toxic language, and a desperate attempt to find stability and feel something like whole, she is forced to question familiar figurations of light, shadow, authenticity, and voice, taking tentative steps toward a new understanding of self and world.