Told from both sides of a strained marriage, “Life is Elsewhere/Burn Your Flags” reveals how individuals deal with change and interpersonal relationships in times of uncertainty and tension. Through a meditative mountain hike and a gritty recollection of the 80s Tokyo punk scene, each character’s account traverses various levels of nostalgia, grief and hopelessness in order to process where they’re at in life and how they got there. Despite its setting in Covid-era Japan, the themes presented are timeless and universal with each character simultaneously reflecting on their individual pasts while deciding how to move forward into the future.
Each account equal parts witty and somber, frenetic and contemplative “Life Is Elsewhere/Burn Your Flags” is a Rashomonian glimpse at 24 hours in the lives of two separate individuals in one unstable relationship.
Iain Maloney is a Scottish author who has lived in Japan since 2005. His other works include three novels, a collection of haikus and a memoir about his life in rural Japan. “Life Is Elsewhere/Burn Your Flags” is currently available for pre-order from Liminal Ink and will be available in stores and online from September 16.