This novella was charming, if bizarre. A young boy (who really seems pretty gender neutral) is obsessed with a woman who sells sandwiches at the supermarket and goes to visit every day over summer. He never speaks to her or even makes eye contact with her, but rather draws portraits endlessly of her, attempting again and again to get her stunning eyes perfect.
Once school starts up again, he still goes to visit when he can, but doesn’t go nearly as often. He begins developing a friendship with one of the girls there who he has nick-named Tutti Frutti. She encourages him to introduce himself rather than just obsessing from afar.
Although this novella is short and simple, a lot is conveyed about the nature of relationships as well as the importance of reaching out to others before we lose our chance to talk with them. The main character I found to be charming, and in a way, he reminded me a lot of the students I work with. He has a strange way of arriving at his logic, and it often doesn’t make sense to others. Kawakami has given this character great depth in such a short amount of writing, and I found this novella to be overall quite lovely.
I received a copy of this book through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.