Supermarket

Satoshi Azuchi, Author, Paul Warham, Translator , trans. from the Japanese by Paul Warham. St. Martin's/Dunne $24.95 (329p) ISBN 978-0-312-38294-0

Azuchi's 1981 post-WWII novel, a perennial favorite in Japan, focuses on the then-new concept of the supermarket chain. Tired of toiling for big business, successful banker Kôjima Ryôsuke decides to trade in his job to work with his cousin Ishikari's burgeoning supermarket chain. As he begins to examine their methods and find new ways to sell products, Kôjima alarms the company's rank-and-file, in particular managing director Ichimura, who has his own agenda. Unbeknownst to Kôjima, select employees are meeting in secret to support Ichimura and ensure “he continues to be the [company's] guiding spirit.” Working with a consultant, Kôjima soon discovers troubling departmental practices, including the sale of unsafe foods, contaminated work areas and employee theft, but his attempts to uncover the depth of the problem could put a halt to the company's expansion. This pleasing novel makes a revealing commentary on loyalty, trust and progress in a rapidly changing Japan. (Feb.)

Reviewed on: 12/01/2008
Release date: 02/01/2009
Genre: Fiction
Open Ebook - 336 pages - 978-1-4299-5380-1
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