It’s a funny kind of morning, bright and sunny, but with dark, ominous clouds appearing and disappearing regularly. I think it’s supposed to rain this afternoon, so I want to write this post and get outside for a long walk while it’s still dry.
I was in the drugstore a couple of weekends ago and was checking out the books they had for sale, and a title caught my eye, Tales from the Café by Toshikazu Kawaguchi, which I saw was a sequel to Before the Coffee Gets Cold. I put the first book on hold at the library and read it last week and it was… interesting. This novel, which I believe is based on a play by the same author, is set in a café in Tokyo where individuals can travel back in time, but there are very specific rules, such as only being able to do this once, sitting in a particular seat and not getting up, and most importantly, returning before your coffee gets cold. The novel centres on a small cast of characters who frequent the café: Nagare, the café's owner, and his wife, Kei; Kazu, the barista; Fusagi, who suffers Alzheimer's, and his wife, Kohtake, who is a nurse; a young woman named Fumiko and her (ex-boyfriend?) Goro; and Hirai, a young woman who runs a nearby snack bar. Each of these characters has experienced loss or guilt over something in the past, and they take advantage of the opportunity to go back in time and hopefully alleviate some of this guilt. But another rule is that nothing you do when you go back will change the present, so they are obviously hesitant to undertake this as well, asking themselves, "What is the point ?". Still, when presented with this chance, who wouldn’t take it? This was a quirky, whimsical novel that asks us to think about a time in our lives we would like to revisit if we could, who we would visit and what we would say. It sounded intriguing, but unfortunately it didn't quite live up to my expectations. Still, I loved the title and it was very short, so I’m glad I read it. I may even read Tales from the Café at some point, too, if only to see if it explains who the woman in the white dress is, but not right away.
That’s all for today. Happy Easter and have a wonderful long weekend!
Bye for now... Julie
PS I almost forgot - April 21 will mark 11 years of posting at Julie's Reading Corner. Thank you for continuing to read these posts and offering your comments. I hope you are finding interesting reading selections from here, at least occasionally!
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