Naiko works in the Undeliverable Mail Office where, immersed in things lost and missing, she searches for clues to match undeliverable mail with addresses. Her job allows her to achieve a semblance of order in a disorderly world. It is ashock, then, when Naiko’s co-worker Andrei, an enigmatic Romanian refugee, suddenly vanishes.
This astonishing debut novel unfolds in compelling, delicately wrought layers. Naiko’s shifting understanding of Andrei’s past becomes an opaque reflection of her own existence, and objectsfrom the pens hoarded by Naiko’s motherin her retirement home to the personal effects of Jewish women that Andrei’s grandmother sorts through at Birkenaubecome touchstones for memories and meaning, loss and love.