Life Ceremony, by Sayaka Murata, translated by Ginny Tapley Takemori

Second paragraph of third chapter (English version, haven’t been able to locate the Japanese original):

Yoshiko had just turned seventy-five. She had never had sex and hadn’t kissed anyone either. She had never even once had intercourse with her older husband, who had died five years earlier. Both of their daughters had been conceived by artificial insemination, and she was still a virgin when she became a mother. Both daughters were now married, and she was thoroughly enjoying living alone in the house her husband had left to her.

One of the books submitted for the Arthur C. Clarke Award, sadly not eligible as it is not a novel but a baker’s dozen of unconnected short stories, vignettes of life in a series of different worlds which are not quite like ours. The creative use of human body parts, including discreet but socially sanctioned cookery, is a recurrent theme. These are all very weird and disturbing but also memorable, and recommended if you think you can take a bit of body horror. You can get it here.

This was my top unread book by a non-white writer. Next on that list is Fevered Star, by Rebecca Roanhorse.