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Publisher's Summary

Tokyo resident Keiko Furukara has never fit in - neither in her family, nor in school - but when at the age of 18 she begins working at the Hiiromachi branch of national convenience store chain Smile Mart, she realizes instantly that she has found her purpose in life. Delighted to be able to exist in a place where the rules of social interaction are crystal clear (many are laid out line-by-line in the store's manual), Keiko does her best to copy the dress, mannerisms, and mode of speech of her colleagues, playing the part of a "normal" person excellently, more or less.

Keiko is the perfect employee - never late, always worrying about how to maximize sales, brilliantly conscientious, and highly energetic. Managers come and go but Keiko remains at the store for 18 years. It's almost hard to tell where the store ends and she begins. At 36, Keiko is very happy in her life, but the people close to her, from her family to her coworkers, pressure her to settle down with a man and to find a proper profession. Eventually, she is pushed to make a huge change. The static world of Keiko is upended - but will it be for the better?

A brilliant depiction of an unusual psyche and an extraordinary world, Convenience Store Woman is both an ironic and sharp-eyed look at contemporary work culture and the pressures to conform, as well as a charming and completely fresh portrait of an unforgettable heroine.

©2018 Sayaka Murata and Ginny Tapley Takemori (P)2018 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Quirky and original

I really enjoyed this quirky and dark-humored story. The main character, Keiko, is so bizarre and original. There isn't much of a plot, but it's a fascinating look at societal expectations. Nancy Wu did an excellent job narrating.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Louise
  • Laguna Niguel, CA, USA
  • 08-07-18

So good

Easy listening from the point of view of a woman with asperger syndrome. I love the book and the look into Japanese culture especially regarding single women. I especially love the ending.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

An interesting read

This short story held an interesting take inside the mind of a woman who could really read people. I was pleased with her confidence at the end.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Be single and happy.

First, hats off to the narrator for a job well done. If she's not good, I won't be able to finish this. And I paid for this, thinking it will be cute cos of the nice book cover. Pfft.
Sorry, but I really thought there would be a cute romance here so when the guy was described as some loser type. like, for real? this is the guy? then the guy started 'talking' geez, nobody in her right mind would even bother to listen once a guy start ranting about the stone age, criticizing society like he is such a victim when he is a derelict. And wait, would you believe - she took him home and let him use her toilet. And was even going to wash his stinky clothes?! I'm already aghast at this point but this girl is not normal so..
Keiko, girl, wth?! You heard what he had to say, out of pity perhaps I understand that you would stay and buy him jasmine tea or whatever. But run when you hear a man say he doesn't want to work, cos he's got this brilliant business idea but he can't hold a steady job, can't pay his rent, probably not even good looking. Just run, as fast as you can. Give him coffee from the vending machine if you are so humanitarian, some spare change for food but run cos he is not a cute puppy, he is a parasite in human form, he said so himself!
Well, I' m just glad that she came to in the end and tossed him out. So she just needed a break to figure out the stupid thing she got herself into.
And why do people around her would want her to get married, even so, it is not like they are pressuring her or anything. And when they learned it is the loser guy, they honestly don't advice her that he is not good for her?
Kinda like a weird film where you don't even know what lesson to take from it. Or how to reflect on it. It is a sad life but she is not, she can't function without the manual. She has programmed herself to be this, and it's ok, that's her life.
What was I expecting? That he would meet a good guy who will take her out of the convenience store. Have a family and together open their own little shop somewhere. Be happy ever after. haha, no. Not in this life.

0 of 6 people found this review helpful