César Aira

The Little Buddhist Monk

In Korea, a little Buddhist monk (really very dwarf-sized) dreams of the Western world and secretly reads up on Western culture. When he meets the holidaying French couple Napoleon Chirac and Jacqueline Bloodymary​​, he offers his services as their guide, in the hope they will take him, a penniless monk, to Europe. He whisks them off on a tour of the temples. Among the many twists and turns, our stunned tourists encounter a suicidal horse and discover that a person can also be a robot. Though our monk appears to them as the very spirit of tourism, nothing is natural in this tour de force of Aira’s twisted imagination.

Read an Excerpt
EBook: £5

More Info

  • Read more about César Aira on our author page.
  • Read a new interview with Aira in The Skinny
  • You can watch a great interview with César Aira on the website of the Louisiana Museum in Copenhagen here.
Print status: Available
Author: César Aira
Original language: Spanish
Format: B-format paperback with flaps
Publication date: 23 March 2017
ISBN: 9781908276988
Ebook ISBN: 9781908276995
Availability: UK, Europe and Commonwealth (excl. Canada)


The Spectator

‘Beautiful . . . so dismayingly sad, and so ghastly, yet so satirically piercing, that one doesn’t know whether to laugh or cry.’

The Skinny

‘An absurdist interpretation of the Western gaze onto Eastern exoticism.’