Twinkle Twinkle

Kaori Ekuni

I finished this slim little delight on a short flight recently. It’s the story of a neurotic, alcoholic Japanese woman and a neurotic, gay Japanese man who get married for the sake of their families, and for the betterment of his career.
These are real live characters, surprisingly deep for such a thin volume, and Ekuni is both a subtle and brilliant in the ways she plumbs the fault lines of her society’s disfunction. It’s all here: the quirky obsessiveness that permeates so much behavior, from Japanese tidiness to gift giving to keeping up appearances. The role of women. The quiet revolt of men — some men — to escape the straightjackets the culture places them in. Highly recommended.

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