Paperback, 160 pages

English language

Published March 8, 1993 by Grove Press.

Copied ISBN!

View on OpenLibrary

4 stars (1 review)

Banana Yoshimoto's novels have made her a sensation in Japan and all over the world, and “Kitchen,” the dazzling English-language debut that is still her best-loved book, is an enchantingly original and deeply affecting book about mothers, love, tragedy, and the power of the kitchen and home in the lives of a pair of free-spirited young women in contemporary Japan.

Mikage, the heroine of “Kitchen,” is an orphan raised by her grandmother, who has passed away. Grieving, she is taken in by her friend Yoichi and his mother (who was once his father), Eriko.

As the three of them form an improvised family that soon weathers its own tragic losses, Yoshimoto spins a lovely, evocative tale that recalls early Marguerite Duras.

“Kitchen” and its companion story, "Moonlight Shadow," are elegant tales whose seeming simplicity is the ruse of a writer whose voice echoes in the mind and the soul.

17 editions


  • Fiction
  • Japan
  • LGBT+
  • Grief
  • Family trauma
  • Cooking
  • Novella
  • Romance
  • Coming of Age