Woman Running in the Mountains (New York Review Books Classics)
With brilliant descriptions of the internal reflections of a rebellious young woman, Tsushima captures the day-to-day life of a search for completeness by an unloved and forgotten individual. The main character of her novel, Takiko Odaka, is very much alone, although she lives with her family. Her father is a sullen and abusive alcoholic, while her mother is passive and dominated by her place in this patriarchy. Takiko has broken society’s rules by giving birth to an illegitimate son.
The author captures the hopelessness of the friendless girl trying to earn a living, find a place of her own, and care for her baby. There are pages devoted to the daily care of the infant, showing time being used up in the endless round of demands on the young mother. As to the title of this novel, what is the young woman running toward and how can she be so defiant, so very independent, and yet so needy and helpless? In this, the author perfectly captures the dilemma of the very young adult. We discover that young adults desperately need parents and mentors.
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