Wow, Ruth Ozeki, you hooked me right away with Nao’s story. A Tale for the Time Being by Ruth Ozeki was very different from what I expected (although I have no idea what I DID expect) but it was amazing.
I requested this book from NetGalley after seeing the cover everywhere and reading a few positive reviews, like Bookmagnet’s post. A Tale for the Time Being comes out today, and it is one that you really must read.
Nao is a Japanese teenager who is just living a crappy life. She went with her parents to California, where she lived from being a young child to age 15. The dot com bubble burst, forcing her dad not only out of the job but all of their invested money went down the drain. Now her dad’s favorite hobby is trying to kill himself.
Nao is also being bullied immensely at school, being physically tortured, cut, poked, etc. So if she’s worthless, and her dad is going to commit suicide, she might as well try to do the same. . . once she gets her thoughts out on paper.
She finds comfort in her grandmother, Jiko, and in her task of writing out what is intended to be Jiko’s story, but really turns into Nao’s story.
How does the reader meet Nao? Well, fast forward a few years to a remote island in Canada, where Ruth and her husband randomly find some zip lock bags washed up on shore, with Nao’s diary, a second diary written by a man in French, and some letters inside.
Ruth is captivated by Nao’s story, and so was I! I loved this book and raced through it. But I have to admit I was much more captivated by Nao’s storyline than Ruth’s.
What book has captivated you lately?
Thanks for reading,