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Strange Weather in Tokyo

Strange Weather in Tokyo

Hiromi Kawakami
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Brief description

A new edition of the bestselling Japanese novel, now including the new short story, 'Parade'.

Full description

Tsukiko is in her late 30s and living alone when one night she happens to meet one of her former high school teachers, 'Sensei', in a bar. He is at least thirty years her senior, retired and, she presumes, a widower. After this initial encounter, the pair continue to meet occasionally to share food and drink sake, and as the seasons pass - from spring cherry blossom to autumnal mushrooms - Tsukiko and Sensei come to develop a hesitant intimacy which tilts awkwardly and poignantly into love. Perfectly constructed, funny, and moving, Strange Weather in Tokyo is a tale of modern Japan and old-fashioned romance. This edition contains the bonus story, 'Parade', which imagines an ordinary day in the lives of this unusual couple.


I'm hooked... It's interesting enough to read about an aging woman drawn to an older man; when this attraction comes wrapped up in Japanese nostalgia for old fashioned inns, mushroom hunting, refined manners, and Basho, how can a person resist? I can only imagine what wizardry must have gone into Allison Markin Powell's translation -- Lorin Stein * Paris Review *
Kawakami paints perfectly the lightness and delicacy of modern Tokyo, delivering a love story that breaks hearts * Monocle *
An elegiac sense of speeding time, and yawning distance, drizzles the story - sensitively translated by Allison Markin Powell - with a sweet sadness -- Boyd Tonkin * Independent *

Author biography

HIROMI KAWAKAMI is one of Japan's most popular contemporary novelists. She is the recipient of the Pascal Short Story Prize for New Writers, the Akutagawa Prize, the Ito Sei Literature Award, the Japan-U.S. Friendship Commission Prize and the Joryu Bungaku Sho (Women Writers' Prize). Strange Weather in Tokyo won the Tanizaki prize, was shortlisted for the Man Asian Literary Prize, and has been translated into thirteen languages.

ALLISON MARKIN POWELL is a literary translator and editor in New York City. She has translated works by Osamu Dazai, Kaho Nakayama, and Motoyuki Shibata, and was the guest editor for the first Japan issue of Words Without Borders.

Readers' comments

a really sweet, gentle book with Lots of cultural insights about Tokyo!