This is a re-read for me. Amélie Nothomb practiced "autofiction" before it was fashionable. This is a fictional account of her time in Japan. Yes, she did work for a big Japanese firm as a translator and yes she was engaged with a well to do Japanese man (the tale of that part of her life is in Ni d'Eve ni d'Adam) but that's where real life ends and fiction begins. This is a short read. Comical, sometimes tragic, sometimes lyrical, with a sarcastic tone, we follow Amélie-san in her year of being the lowest of the lowest in the hierarchy of this huge Japanese corporation in 1990. From being hired as a translator, to xeroxing golf club administrative papers for days to taking care of the washroom, Amélie-san day dreams and watches. It's a intriguing view inside a close society very removed from my own.