The writing style is unique and enjoyable. I get the feeling that Banana Yoshimoto transplants Sakumi's amnesia to the readers through a non-linear introduction of characters and events. Many times I found myself referring back furiously trying to recall a seemingly off-handed remark, that turned up to have greater significance later in the plot. Information is also slipped into different parts of the story, making it difficult to remember where exactly one has read a particular detail about a character. This writing style makes the story quietly seductive allowing the reader to drift from one event to another, from one scene to another, captivated by the vivid descriptions of Sakumi's experience and the realistic depictions of human drama that feels very familiar. Then, at key junctures, Banana Yoshimoto turns around and reminds the reader that a little tidbit of information that the reader might have overlooked, hence, drawing a connection between the reader and Sakumi by depicting a sense of novelty mixed with familiarity.
Another strength of the novel is the richness of its characters. Banana Yoshimoto's sharp observation on the human condition allows her to serve up the psyche of the characters in the thick, confusing, way that our thoughts often interweave with each other. And yet, it is served with her subtle insight into those complex thoughts, which provides the reader with a sense of intellectual therapy.