Neither thumbs up nor thumbs down for The Housekeeper and the Professor by Yoko Ogawa. Literature.
This book was fine. In a clear, readable way, it tells the simple story of the friendship between a housekeeper and her son with a mathematics professor who has only eighty minutes of long-term memory. But I demand a bit more from books than that they be “fine.” There are so many great books out there, why read one that is just “fine”?
“But by far the most curious thing about the Professor’s appearance was the fact that his suit was covered with innumerable scraps of notepaper, each one attached to him by a tiny binder clip. Every conceivable surface – the collar, cuffs, pockets, hems, belt loops, and buttonholes – was covered with notes, and the binder clips gathered the fabric of his clothing in awkward bunches. The notes were simply scraps of torn paper, some yellowing and crumbling. In order to read them, you had to get close and squint, but it soon became clear that he was compensating for his lack of memory by writing down the things he absolutely had to remember and pinning them where he couldn’t lose them – on his body. His odd appearance was as distracting as his questions about my shoe size.”
If you enjoyed this post, please share it!