A celebrated actress who has died in mysterious and shocking circumstances leaves behind an unconventional extended family that includes an older sister, a woman in her twenties through whose eyes the story unfolds; a young brother who possesses mystical powers; and a fiance who is writing a novel with uncanny parallels to his own story.
'Her novels can have the effect of addictive drugs . . . Pathos, nostalgia, the sense of exquisite sadness at the fleetingness of life are key elements of beauty in Japanese aesthetics, and all are themes central to Yoshimoto's books.' The Times