Social Issues


PUBLISHED : Sunday, 26 September, 2004, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 26 September, 2004, 12:00am


By Natsuo Kirino

Vintage $101

This is the first novel by Natsuo Kirino - one of Japan' most popular crime writers and winner of the country's top mystery award, for this book - to be translated into English. In a grim Tokyo industrial area, four women work nightshifts at a factory packing boxed lunches. Each has problems in her home life: huge debts, good-for-nothing husbands, families who take them for granted. When one of them snaps and kills her abusive husband, the others agree to help her dispose of the body. The women embark on a dangerous and violent path that leads them to more trouble than it solves. Like a Japanese version of Thelma and Louise, it caused outrage in Japan for daring to express the frustrations of suburban housewives.