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Aishwariya's LittLog

On Books, Writing, Editing, and More

Book Review by K.S.Loganathan. 

Yagisawa’s debut novel about a second-hand bookshop in Tokyo has been made into a Japanese film, and its English translation is now available.  In sharp contrast to the anxiety-inducing communications via digital media so prevalent today, the old bookshop and its neighborhood in Tokyo, embody face-to-face conversations over books and coffee.

In a second-hand bookshop, you can make connections that transcend time- a pressed flower used as a bookmark, an underlined passage, etc. But this book is not about the many pleasures of reading. It is about a garret in the bookshop owned by Satoru who tells his niece recovering from a breakup, “This is your harbor. And your boat is dropping anchor here for a little while. And after you are well rested, you can set sail again.” Later, even Satoru’s estranged wife, Momoko takes refuge in the same harbor.

It is a slow-moving story about the old ways of healing and moving on, charming because it is anachronistic. Although there are a few references to some of the best-loved novels and short stories in Japanese literature, the gaijin may not be able to appreciate or enjoy them.

Pic of book cover

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ABOUT AUTHOR
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Aishwariya Laxmi

I’m Aishwariya. I’m passionate about writing, reading, marketing communications, books, blogging, poetry and editing. I’ve donned several hats, such as freelance journalist, copywriter, blogger and editor.

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