In this session of the Dialogue Society Book Group, we will explore What You Are Looking for is in the Library by Michiko Aoyama on Friday, 12th January 2024.
What are you looking for?, so asks Tokyo’s most enigmatic librarian, Sayuri Komachi. But she is no ordinary librarian. Sensing exactly what someone is searching for in life, she provides just the book recommendation to help them find it. We meet five visitors to the library, each at a different crossroads: The restless retail assistant eager to pick up new skills, the mother faced with a demotion at work after maternity leave, the conscientious accountant who yearns to open an antique store, the gifted young manga artist in search of motivation, the recently retired salaryman on a quest for a newfound purpose. After reading Komachi’s unique book recommendation, they will soon discover what they need to achieve their dreams.
Already loved by thousands of readers, it is an inspirational tale of the love, comfort and growth you can find in the pages of a good book.
THE TIMES BESTSELLER
Shortlisted for The Japan Booksellers’ Award
A Time Magazine Top 100 Must-read 2023
‘An undeniable page-turner’ New York Times
‘I ADORED this uplifting, hopeful novel … A joy from start to finish, this book makes you feel anything is possible’ Wendy Holden, Daily Mail
‘It made me laugh and cry and feel comforted’ 5***** Reader review
‘A tribute to the transformative power of books and libraries’ Irish Times
‘I definitely want to visit this library. I feel kinder after this book’ 5***** Reader review
‘A quirky slice of feel-good fiction that you could recommend to anyone’ Mail on Sunday
‘Wonderful. It made me look for connection in my life’ 5***** Reader review
For fans of The Midnight Library and Before the Coffee Gets Cold, this feel-good Japanese book shows how the perfect book recommendation can change a life.
About the Dialogue Society Book Group
The Dialogue Society Book Group explores the capacity of books to provide windows into different cultural and intercultural worlds. We will be choosing a series of quality novels to read and then discuss together at relaxed, sociable gatherings at the Dialogue Society. Participants are welcome to suggest books for future sessions.
Participants will need to find a copy of the book chosen for each meeting and will need to read it prior to the meeting.
We will have a conversation about the book and our responses to it. Discussion may cover:
- the quality of the storytelling
- the authenticity and accuracy with which a historical/cultural situation is portrayed
- our personal responses to it
You do not need to be an expert on literature or anything else to join in. The group should be enjoyable for anyone who enjoys a good book and likes discovering new ones.
Prospective books for future sessions (NB we are open to suggestions)
- Sophie’s World by Jostein Gaarder
- The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
- Wheel of Time: New Spring by Robert Jordan
- Hollow Fires by Samira Ahmed
- Darius the Great is not Okay by Adib Khorram