The Woman in the Purple Skirt: A Novel
Each human searches for connectedness. This novel is about one such search. The woman in the yellow cardigan sees the Woman in the Purple Skirt as a fellow traveler. In as much as we all struggle to be seen and heard, the woman in the yellow cardigan seeks recognition and reward from this other person.
I am not schooled in Japanese literature, but the writer invests her story, much like Murakami, in magical realism. The novel reads like a fairy story. I was interested to learn that the writer once worked as a hotel maid, as both characters in the story end up working as hotel maids in a high-end hotel. The details of this job ring at once true and also nightmarish.
Like many of us, the woman in the yellow cardigan is an observer of life, so much so that she disappears from view in the lives and activities of others. With a uniform, grooming aids, and a new job, the other woman becomes transformed from her idleness. Can we truly find our other halves? And can we become transformed through the good offices of that person?
|Penguin Random House
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