Thank you, Scribe UK for sending me a copy of the perfect world of Miwako Sumida by Clarissa Goenawan for free in exchange for an honest review.
The Perfect World of Miwako Sumida may sound all fluffy but please don’t be deceived by the title or the cover, this is actually a very dark story. This book follows three different characters trying to understand the suicide of the Miwako of the title. Miwako Sumida is a sophomore in college when she commits suicide leaving behind our three main characters.
The three main characters this book follows are Ryusei, a fellow university student, Chie, a close friend, and Fumi, Ryusei’s older sister, who took on Miwako as an art apprentice at her studio. Each of them has parts of the picture, by telling their stories they hope to discover more about Miwako. The perspectives of these characters, the emotions they bring, and complexed identities are incredibly well written and are expertly intertwined perfectly with the mysterious surrounding Miwako’s and her death. This book is less about Miwako’s death but more about her friends discovering themselves and learning who they want to be as adults. (I’m really not doing this book any justice am I).
Clarissa allows us the readers to paint our own a
portrait of Miwako. During this book there is a sort of apprehension in her
writing, but it is a coyness that engages and opens possibilities, not one that
creates a disconnect between the reader and the book. I’ll be honest readers
that this the first novel I have read that allows us to see what the characters
can’t its very complicated to explain and I’m not doing a good job of it but by
God I am here for it. One way I have
seen it explained is that Clarissa has penned a intricate character study.
I was enveloped in the smooth and clever storytelling throughout this book the writing is beautiful and both smart and simple at the same time and it was a real pleasure to read. I will leave you with one question... Why was Miwako in hiding?