Bacacay (Archipelago Books), a collection of some of the strangest, funniest and most wondrous stories ever published, introduces the early work of Witold Gombrowicz, one of Poland’s greatest literary figures and one of the twentieth century’s most important writers. This first English edition exhibits Gombrowicz’s limitless imagination and mastery of language with stories about cannibalism, unlikely adventures at sea, Hooligan the bandit, a duel between a synthesist and an analyst, a birth during a tennis match at the Parisian Racing-Club, and many more odd subjects. Bacacay is a substantial read, for both the content, which is often absurd, unlikely and unfamiliar, and the language, which can seem repetitive, jarring and foreign. But the stories are entertaining and rich with meaning, and the style is innovative and thought-provoking. Gombrowicz was born in 1904 and wrote most of these stories in the late 1920s and early 1930s, but rather than feeling dated, they seem to come from another world, much like the works of Franz Kafka or Gabriel García Márquez, and they give a picture of a strange and brilliant young man.