Author: Satoshi Azuchi; Translated by Paul Warham
A modern classic of literature in Japan, Supermarket is a novel of the human drama surrounding the management of a supermarket chain at a time when the phenomenon of the supermarket, imported postwar from the US, was just taking hold in Japan.
When Kojima, an elite banker resigns his job to help a cousin manage Ishiei, a supermarket in one of Japan's provincial cities, a host of problems ensue. Store employees are stealing products, the books are in disaray, and the workers seem stuck in old ways of thinking. As Kojima begins to give all his time over to the relentless task of reforming the store's management, a chance encounter with a woman from his childhood causes him to ask the age-old question: is the all encompassing pursuit of business success really worth it?
Sincere and naive in tone, Supermarket takes us back to a simpler, kinder time, and skillfully presents the depictions of its characters alongside a wealth of information concerning Japanese post WWII recovery and industrialization.
Thomas Dunne Books