A quietly supernatural, simply-written short novel about family. It’s narrated by Yayoi, who goes to stay with her otherworldly aunt Yukino, a music teacher who has a tendency to disappear for days at a time. Confusingly, Yayoi is drawn to her brother Tetsuo and knows there is something unusual about their dynamic. I find it difficult to write about this book, as not much happened in it – a bit of travel, some food, a low-key spookiness and a gradual recovery of memories – but I know that I liked it! The book has that unhurried, philosophical tone that I have discovered in other Japanese literature. I definitely want to read more of this author.
First published in 1988. This edition translated into English by Asa Yoneda and published in 2023.