Outlet

Overview

When finance writer Yuki's enigmatic and estranged older brother is found decomposing in his apartment, her only clues to his bizarre demise are her memories of him. As Yuki descends deeper and deeper into her own psyche, she catches glimpses of her true nature.

A brisk, bristling story of survivor's guilt, treacherous sex, and unexpected redemption, Outlet opens the door to a spiritual dimension that is both new and age-old. The climax is ...

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Overview

When finance writer Yuki's enigmatic and estranged older brother is found decomposing in his apartment, her only clues to his bizarre demise are her memories of him. As Yuki descends deeper and deeper into her own psyche, she catches glimpses of her true nature.

A brisk, bristling story of survivor's guilt, treacherous sex, and unexpected redemption, Outlet opens the door to a spiritual dimension that is both new and age-old. The climax is mind-blowing.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"...the novel's dark twists and turns should keep readers hooked until the surprising climax. "- Publishers Weekly

"Shamanism and magical realism collide with life in this bestselling first novel by Randy Taguchi." - SFREvu

"Well worth a read."- Blizzard Boy Blog

Publishers Weekly
A young Japanese finance writer tries to uncover the truth behind her older brother's mysterious death in Taguchi's bizarre, provocative and sometimes grisly debut novel, which was a bestseller in Japan. After a steamy one-night stand with her old friend Kimura, Yuki Asakura learns that her brother Taka's badly decomposed body has been found in his apartment; it seems he has starved himself to death. After Yuki helps her shaken family-brutal alcoholic father and distraught mother-make it through the funeral, she turns to her college psychology professor and former lover, Atsuo Kunisada, whom she hopes will help her cope with her loss. Yuki has also begun smelling the stench of death on people who appear healthy, including Kimura, and has been troubled by surreal dreams about her brother. When she runs into an old classmate, Ritsuko Honda, who's now studying shamanism, Ritsuko steers Yuki to a shaman named Yamagishi, who further interprets the dreams as Yuki closes in on the heart of the mystery. She struggles to maintain her sanity as she's torn between dreams and reality: "I'm way past neurotic and into schizophrenic," she says. But the truth is more complicated: it becomes clear that what she'd smelled on Kimura was cancer, for which he is successfully treated, and that her sexual encounters may have a healing power. Taguchi's blocky but absorbing prose links the mystical to the technological, and the novel's dark twists and turns should keep readers hooked until the surprising climax. (Oct.) Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
Library Journal
This semiautobiographical debut novel by a popular Japanese Internet columnist plugs inherent spirituality into the fast-paced life of a single woman in modern Japan. Yuki, a financial columnist, rushes back to her childhood home upon learning that her brother was found dead, having wasted away in his apartment. She takes control of the funeral arrangements to comfort her parents and get to the bottom of her brother's mysterious death. Over time, Yuki begins to feel a strange physical bond to her dead brother, sensing his presence through smell. Searching for answers to this mysterious phenomenon, she launches herself on a quest that delves into the world of schizophrenia, voyeurism, and shamanistic rituals. Eventually, Yuki discovers her true purpose in life and finds salvation following a spiritual confrontation with her brother. Combining ancient mysticism with the hustle and bustle of modern living, Outlet is a sexually charged and intriguing New Age mystery that is smart and well paced. A good fit for public libraries where visionary fiction is popular.-Ron Samul, New London, CT Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781932234046
  • Publisher: Vertical, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 11/15/2003
  • Pages: 269
  • Sales rank: 1,506,199
  • Product dimensions: 5.54 (w) x 8.22 (h) x 0.86 (d)

Meet the Author

Randy Taguchi renown as "The Queen of the Internet" in her native Japan where her running e-commentary on everyday life has been phenomenally popular. Outlet, her first novel, was a bestseller there and is her first work to appear in English.

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 3, 2005

    Not what you think it is...

    Overall the style I have grown accustomed to when reading other Japanese authors is definitely here. The detailed character development and slower pace suits me well. If you are looking for something fast-paced or 'mainstream' this probably won't be your cup of tea. While Taguchi's writing is good, I found that once I was into the character the story bored me to tears. What you would believe by the synopsis of the book is that you might be reading a supernatural thriller of sorts. It does carry those elements, but is more psychological than the average ghost story. The story spends an equal amount of time working on the main character flaw's and the investigation into her brothers death. However, the end just doesn't seem to fit well. There is a quite a bit of sex in the book which is necessary to follow the plot line and the main character's story. If you are squeamish about sex, this probably isn't for you either. After you find out why her brother died, there's really no reason to finish the book other than you've read 80% of the story. Needless to say, the ending didn't impress me however I did enjoy Mr. Taguchi's writing style.

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