I loved this book. It is quirky, funny, sad and surreal. Share beer, books, isolation, daring artistic acts and meet tall Mr Hughes, short Mr Hughes and Mr Puw with Myuki on her annual holiday in darkest Wales.
When it appeared on the bar the glass was full to the brim. Her hands were small, and she had to use both of them to get a steady grip and bring it to her lips without spilling any. As she slowly lifted it up and dipped her head to meet it she was reminded, as she often was in this situation, of footage she had seen of Japanese tea ceremonies. The movement came so naturally to her that she couldn’t help feeling as though the muscles it used must have contained the ghost of any ancient memory. She pictured herself in a kimono and then felt a familiar sharp stab of embarrassment because all she was doing was drinking the top of a pint of beer, and that had nothing at all to do with being half Japanese. Once she had swallowed the first mouthful and there was a clear half-inch at the top, she was able to use one hand to lift the glass without the risk of spilling anything. She went outside and sat at a picnic table, where she read the first chapter of that day’s book, and had some difficulty eating a bag of dry roasted peanuts with gloves on.