Out by Natsuo Kirino

Here are the discussion questions for this Natsuo Kirino novel featured on BOOKED. Be sure to check out the general Booked club questions posted on our web site.

  1. Britain's The Independent described Out as "A feminist plot revenge meets social critique and hardcore horror in a startling Japanese mix of satire and sensation". Would you consider it to be a "feminist revenge novel"? Why or why not?

  2. The novel starts with an impulsive crime of passion followed by a desperate cover-up by an unlikely group friends. What did you think about the premise of the story? Were there any parts of the story that didn't work for you?

  3. Novelist Natsuo Kirino presents an incredible cast of characters including the cool and calculating Masako, the care-giver Yoshie, the selfish Kuniko, and the beautiful and naïve Yayoi. What did you think about the relationship between these women? Was it believable? Did any other characters stand out? If so, who and why?

  4. Tokyo is quite vividly drawn in this novel. What did you think of the author's portrayal of Japan? If you've been there, does the description ring true?

  5. Yayoi kills her husband, Masako has no feelings for her husband and Kuniko ridicules her boyfriend for his disinterest in sex. What message is this novel delivering about the relationships between men and women in Japan?

  6. The Library Journal claims Out "brings the mystery thriller to new levels of intensity and has great plot twists, vigor, and an ending that would make Hannibal Lecter smile." Do you agree? What did you think of the graphic descriptions of dismemberment and sex? What did you think of the rape scene?

  7. The novel's title is the same in English as it is in Japanese. What do you think the significance of the title "Out" is?

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