The pressure is palpable in this Japanese crime novel. The pressure women are under in Japan. Financial woes. The sexism that values young girls and not older women. The despair of a family falling apart.
The book is well written and moves along at a realistic pace. The characters are more complex than first meets the eye and not too much is revealed about them all at once. You learn a little more about them as the story goes along. The narration shifts so you follow the story through different eyes and perspectives.
You can't take back an action that forever changes your life. Or does it change you? How far will others go to help you and help themselves? What does it mean to have power or be in control?
The book is graphic. Don't read this one at lunch. The ending was strange - I thought Masako was portrayed as a strong leader throughout the book I did not quite buy the **SPOILER** of her caring for Satake. But maybe all the violence finally opened something up inside of her and she was able to feel. Before this episode in her life she was as mechanical as a robot working to make box lunches.
I've heard that the author's other books are not quite as good and more violent so I think this will be my one and only reading of Natsuo Kirino.