Convenience Store Woman is one of those books that seemed to be everywhere and I had, luckily, only heard good things about it. For me, those good things panned out and I ended up really loving this book!
I listened to the audiobook which was a pretty fantastic experience. The story follows a 36-year-old woman, Keiko Furukura, who has been working in a convenience store for the past 18 years. She loves it and feels good about how well she does her job but she’s constantly faced with societal expectations surrounding her career goals, personal life (mostly her lack of romance and/or marriage), and her struggles to connect with most people.
The book takes on a laid back feel but is still a bit of a page-turner. It’s quick and easy to get through because of its length but also because it’s so easy to get sucked into the life of Keiko.
It’s definitely more of a character-driven book is more of a character-driven piece. While there is a plot, it’s minimal and we delve more into Keiko Furukura’s thoughts and feelings surrounding the events of the book and the other people’s actions (and reactions). While Keiko is sometimes unfairly judged, she is very much a flawed main character, something that is acknowledged and makes for an even more interesting read. It also doesn’t stop you from rooting for her either. In fact, it all makes Keiko feel relatable even though not every reader will have the exact same experiences or personality or qualities as her. It’s also that relatability that makes the story even more entertaining to read.
Overall, this book is worth checking out. It’s essentially a slice of life that’s both simple but eye-opening in a lot of ways. It’s one you can take seriously or just sit back and enjoy. Either way, it’s got a great main character whose point of view is interesting and whose story is an entertaining but important one even if, on the surface, it appears to only explore the simple and the mundane.
Rating: ★★★★ /5