Reviews

Strange Weather in Tokyo by Hiromi Kawakami

yasminlibrarian's review against another edition

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emotional slow-paced

3.0

mt1's review against another edition

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emotional hopeful reflective medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? It's complicated
  • Loveable characters? No
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? It's complicated

3.0

i_am_sam_'s review against another edition

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emotional relaxing sad slow-paced

3.0

whitneysederberg's review against another edition

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3.0

i liked the themes and the story a lot, but i think a lot was lost in translation for this one. i loved how poetry and language was incorporated into the story, i wish i was more familiar w japanese culture at all. the writing lacked any charisma even when the scenes and characters were pleasing. bought this bc i love the cover but the writing inside is forgettable

hagarmohmed's review against another edition

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5.0

"In loneliness I have drifted this long way, alone.
My torn and shabby robe could not keep out the cold.
And tonight the sky was so clear it made my heart ache all the more."

"Strange Weather in Tokyo" by Hiromi Kawakami is a beautifully written novel that explores the life of a young woman named Tsukiko and her complex relationship with her sensei, a wise and enigmatic figure in her life. The novel tells the story of Tsukiko's journey from loneliness and confusion to self-discovery and adulthood, all set against the backdrop of the bustling city of Tokyo.

One of the most striking elements of the novel is the deep, intimate relationship that develops between Tsukiko and her sensei. At first, Tsukiko is hesitant and resistant to his guidance, but over time, she comes to appreciate the wisdom and support he offers her. The relationship is complex and multifaceted, and it is a central theme of the novel.

Through their interactions, both Tsukiko and her sensei learn and grow, and their relationship evolves in unexpected ways. This is a powerful portrayal of the dynamics of mentoring and the ways in which personal connections can enrich and transform our lives.

The novel is also filled with memorable side characters who help to create a vivid and immersive world. Each character is unique and well-drawn, with their own distinct personality and backstory. They are all easy to connect with and help to flesh out the world of the novel, making it feel real and authentic.

The writing felt alot like a fever dream, cinematic and ethereal are two words that astonish me to use them for describing a book but that is the case here, the dreamy atmosphere that was created between two ordinary characters, the sentimental perspective and uncertainty of both tsukiko and her sensei. All these elements were serving the plot in the most perfect way.

As the novel progresses, Tsukiko's journey takes her from a state of loneliness and confusion to a place of self-discovery and growth. The themes of identity, connection, and self-discovery are explored in a thoughtful and introspective way, and they create a sense of depth and meaning that lingers long after the final page is read.

I found it really peculiar to relate somehow to tsukiko who's in her late 30s, struggling with her loneliness and almost pushing away the people around her but for some reason she found comfort with her sensei, Suddenly acting a bit amateur whenever she was around him. And for some reason I saw my future self in her, some one who is living a bit of lonesome life yet it's not really bothersome, Absurdity I would say.

Overall, "Strange Weather in Tokyo" is a deeply moving and thought-provoking novel that explores the complexities of personal connections and the process of self-discovery. The relationship that develops between Tsukiko and her sensei is the heart of the novel, and it is a powerful and transformative depiction of the ways in which mentoring can enrich and transform our lives. If you are looking for a well-written and introspective read, this is definitely a book worth considering.


P.S: 2023 was not my best year regarding books, all of the books I have read this year are unfortunately mediocre so I'm really happy to finish the year with such a gentle and sweet book, on my top favourites for sure

devilbb666's review against another edition

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emotional reflective sad slow-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? No

4.25

grj619's review against another edition

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emotional hopeful lighthearted reflective slow-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

5.0

Strange weather in Tokyo is a brilliant exploration of loneliness and love, told through a relationship between a woman and a man who meet at a bar. From the moment these two characters are reunited, Hiromi Kawakami takes us through the development of their relationship. 

Through that we see the loneliness of the main character and how her life comes to depend on ‘Sensei,’ even when she tries to avoid him. 

I found Sensei to be a frustrating character, but perhaps that is how he is supposed to be written. 

I was compelled to mark several sections of the book because the writing was so beautiful. The simple prose and short chapters urge you to turn the pages. 

sjfrancis's review against another edition

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emotional hopeful reflective medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

3.5

wodehousing's review against another edition

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slow-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character

midnightnoon's review against another edition

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3.0

weird and awkward little romance between two people who keep showing up in each others lives. weird and a lil creepy bc age gap/teacher-student