Menus are clues to this book which features food, copious drink and sex. Set in the late-night world of china town, Manhattan, the story focuses on Ito a sushi chef, and Mariane an alcoholic waitress. Their parallel and colliding lives hint at loneliness and desperation and as their stories unravel we discover disturbing events.
Ito turns to pour the wet rice into the large chrome ricemaker, and for a brief second catches a different angle of Mariane and a section of her throat. As his hands take on a clamlike shape, he deftly and methodically scoops the transparent grains and at the same time sieves an image flashing in his brain, beyond the chimera of language and culture he crisscrosses daily, the basic knowledge imparted in the tiny muscles in her throat as she drinks from her cup, and how those muscles move like an animal under cloth.