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Olga Ravn’s The Employees, translated by Martin Aitken and shortlisted for the International Booker Prize, is a sci-fi story set within the world of futuristic spaceship run by productivity-minded humans and humanoids. The book, structured through witness statements from the crew members about a number of strange objects the ship has received from another planet, relays what happens when those objects begin prompting deep reactions, reminding the humans of a now-faraway earth and filling the humanoids with new feelings, like longing and a desire for warmth. The Employees is a clever exploration of what it means to be a person—and an excellent satire of corporate lingo. —Mahita Gajanan

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