South of the Border, West of the Sun
A moving, thoughtful story of long-lost love and second chances
Growing up in the suburbs in post-war Japan, it seemed to Hajime that everyone but him had brothers and sisters. His sole companion was Shimamoto, also an only child. Together they spent long afternoons listening to her father’s record collection. But when his family moved away, the two lost touch.
Now Hajime is in his thirties. After a decade of drifting, he has found happiness with his loving wife and two daughters, and success running a jazz bar. Then Shimamoto reappears. She is beautiful, intense, enveloped in mystery. Hajime is catapulted into the past, putting at risk all he has in the present.
‘Casablanca remade Japanese style…It is dream-like writing, laden with scenes which have the radiance of a poem’ The Times
Impressively written and structured... Above all, the novel is memorable for its unflinchingly extreme treatment of romantic love * Times Literary Supplement * This book aches...an eloquent treatise on the vertiginous, irrational powers of love and desire * Independent on Sunday * This wise and beautiful book is full of hidden truths * New York Times * Casablanca remade Japanese style...It is dream-like writing, laden with scenes which have the radiance of a poem * The Times * A story of love in a cool climate, intensely romantic and weepily beautiful...it is startlingly different: a true original * Guardian *
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