Books Like Before The Coffee Gets Cold

Feeling a bit chilly? As the days grow shorter and the weather gets colder, there’s nothing like snuggling up with a good book to escape the winter blues. And if you’re in need of some heartwarming and wholesome stories to warm your heart, we’ve got you covered. Marmalade Cafe presents a selection of eight Japanese books that will transport you to adventurous journeys and snowy scenes, all from the comfort of your cozy reading nook.

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1. The Guest Cat by Takashi Hiraide

A charming story set in a sleepy Tokyo suburb, “The Guest Cat” tells the tale of a couple in their thirties who have lost their spark. But everything changes when a stray cat finds its way into their home, breathing new life into their relationship. This heartwarming story highlights the impact of shared experiences and caring for something together. Get ready to be captivated by the magic of feline companionship.

The Guest Cat

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2. Snow Country by Yasunari Kawabata

Travel to snowy Japan with “Snow Country,” a beautiful love story set in Edo-period Japan. Shimamura, a married man from Tokyo, finds himself captivated by the geisha Komako during his visit to a remote mountain resort. As their love story unfolds, they face the harsh reality of a geisha’s life, bound by tradition and seclusion. Immerse yourself in the enchanting scenery and captivating characters of this classic novel.

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Snow Country

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3. The Office of Gardens and Ponds by Didier Decoin

Embark on a journey through picturesque Japan with “The Office of Gardens and Ponds.” After her fisherman husband’s death, Miyuki takes on the responsibility of delivering their village’s local koi fish to the royal palace in Kyoto. Through her travels, she experiences the stark contrast between the upper and lower classes, facing snobbery and political barriers. This compelling story explores love, determination, and the pursuit of belonging.

The Office of Gardens and Ponds

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4. Memoirs of a Polar Bear by Yoko Tawada

Prepare to be enchanted by the whimsical world of “Memoirs of a Polar Bear.” Spanning three generations of polar bears, this novel humanizes these majestic creatures as talented writers and performers. As the bears reflect on human politics and economics, readers are treated to a blend of reality and surrealism. Dive into this heartwarming tale of family, migration, and love, which leaves a lasting impact.

Memoirs of a Polar Bear

5. Before the Coffee Gets Cold by Toshikazu Kawaguchi

Are you ready for a time-traveling adventure? Step into the world of “Before the Coffee Gets Cold,” where an ancient Tokyo cafe houses a magical chair. By sitting in that chair, visitors can travel to the past, but with strict rules to follow. This charming story revolves around the cafe’s regulars and the heartwarming stories that come alive within its walls. Discover the power of friendship and the wonders of the past.

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Before the Coffee Gets Cold

6. A Wild Sheep Chase by Haruki Murakami

Delve into the supernatural and surreal with “A Wild Sheep Chase,” Haruki Murakami’s first full-length novel. From Tokyo to the rugged countryside of Hokkaido, follow our narrator on a bizarre detective mission to track down a mysterious sheep. But this quest becomes much more than a search for a sheep, as it leads to self-discovery and a profound exploration of one’s purpose. Lose yourself in this slow-burning and exhilarating winter read.

A Wild Sheep Chase

7. Sweet Bean Paste by Durian Sukegawa

Prepare to be immersed in the flavors of authentic Japanese sweet bean paste with “Sweet Bean Paste.” Follow Sentaro, a failed writer with a criminal past, as he navigates life selling dorayaki from a small shop. When he reluctantly hires the disfigured and outcast Tokue, their friendship forces Sentaro to confront his prejudices. This bittersweet novel explores prejudice, inner demons, and the power of genuine connections.

Sweet Bean Paste

8. Goodbye Tsugumi by Banana Yoshimoto

Experience the bonds of sisterly love in “Goodbye Tsugumi,” set in a quaint seaside town in Japan. Maria, whose family runs an inn, shares a special connection with her cousin Tsugumi, who lives with a life-threatening illness. As Maria’s university life beckons, she must grapple with the emotional challenges presented by Tsugumi’s condition. This heartfelt story explores loyalty, family ties, and the enduring power of friendship.

Goodbye Tsugumi

Escape into the enchanting world of these Japanese books, where snowy landscapes, heartfelt stories, and captivating characters await. Snuggle up with a warm cup of tea, cozy blankets, and these delightful reads, courtesy of Marmalade Cafe. Let these winter picks transport you to a world filled with adventure and warmth.

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