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Publisher's Summary

Shortlisted for the 2013 Man Asian Literary Prize, Strange Weather in Tokyo is a story of loneliness and love that defies age.

Tsukiko, 38, works in an office and lives alone. One night, she happens to meet one of her former high school teachers, "Sensei", in a local bar. Tsukiko had only ever called him "Sensei" ("Teacher"). He is 30 years her senior, retired, and presumably a widower. Their relationship develops from a perfunctory acknowledgment of each other as they eat and drink alone at the bar, to a hesitant intimacy, which tilts awkwardly and poignantly into love.

As Tsukiko and Sensei grow to know and love one another, time's passing is marked by Kawakami's gentle hints at the changing seasons: from warm sake to chilled beer, from the buds on the trees to the blooming of the cherry blossoms. Strange Weather in Tokyo is a moving, funny, and immersive tale of modern Japan and old-fashioned romance.

Photo credit: ©Hisaji Hara and Natsumi Hayashi

©2012 Hiromi Kawakami (P)2018 Audible, Inc.

What listeners say about Strange Weather in Tokyo

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • mz
  • 01-02-19

Cozy Love Story and Leisure Time in Japan

A cute and warm story of love between two people aged 30 years apart. Cozy food and drinks in the odenya, mushroom hunting in the forest in Tochigi, Kappabashi the kitchenware district, high school reunion, island inn, ... the book takes us into the average Japanese person's leisure life outside of work. Every moment in the book is after work or on the weekends, giving the book a relaxed setting that is easy to read on.

I've listened to the book twice in a row. It's a nice leisurely listen, especially if you are interested in Japanese daily life, Japanese food, culture, nature, or quiet and gradual romance.

4 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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Short and Sweet

This is a sweet, simple story that contains some complicated elements. I cared about the characters a lot and I wanted to find out what would happen next. The performance was adequate - some odd acting and pronunciation choices , though. Overall, this was a good experience. A brief, poignant trip worth taking. Added Bonus: After experiencing this book, I have a new love and appreciation of Haiku. Up until now, Haiku was something that I was required to 'come up with' in school. I did not enjoy it or appreciate it at all. I do now and I credit the author, Hiromi Kawakami for changing my heart and changing my mind.

2 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Beautiful descriptions, lackluster characters

I read this book since it was on a list of books that describe Japanese scenery well. It certainly accomplished that with equally delicious sounding food. The story though was 5ish hours, and after 3 hours I was ready for it to end. The two main characters are nothing special and rather dull.

1 person found this helpful

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Loved it

The whole book has the sensibility of haiku. It’s distilled, delicate, sensual, deep, tender, subtle. The narrator was perfect for the part & I’m already planning to relisten to it soon.

1 person found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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Not Recommended

Unable to finish. Not engaging enough. Story takes long time to develop into interesting narrative.

1 person found this helpful

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Pleasant but repetitive and unrevealing

I can’t remember how many bottles of sake she drank but it was a lot more than thirty, the story is while pedantic quite prettily told and mildly amusing but then I’m just a romantic sensitive guy!

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Cute vignette

A cute slice of life in a japanese woman and mans life as they go towards their end of life.

A good character study and thoughtful in dealing with relationships as one ages.

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I mean it's cute but meh

i don't know what to make of this book. i was lied to by the cover but I'm not sorry I listened to the whole thing? I've read some utter crap this year so this was a good change of pace