This is an intriguing mystery story - why has Shoko Sekine suddenly disappeared? Police detective, Honma, is asked to do some private detective work for a cousin and uncovers all sorts. An interesting novel in the way it explains the social context and way of life in modern Japan. The speech is translated in rather a stilted fashion but it doesn't spoil the story.
Honma felt like whacking himself on the forehead. Two months away from the job and already he was losing it. In any investigation, what was the first thing you absolutely had to do? Get a positive ID .... Do the name and face match up? 'Sorry, one last question .... The woman in this photo is Shoko Sekine, right?' Mizoguchi looked at it. And kept looking, much too long.