Antenna is a powerful account of grief and healing within a family following the tragic disappearance of their daughter. With expert pacing combining narrative and dream sequences, Taguchi relentlessly takes her protagonist and readers alike to the depths of raw pain and torment, to the very edge of sanity, and ultimately to a kind of catharsis as the family finally achieve closure and are able to move on in their lives.
AuthorRandy Taguchi
ISBN978 - 4344402478
CategoryLiterature & Fiction
PublicationJune, 2002
Estimated length362P
Size152 × 102 mm
Sold toItaly, Russia
"Antenna" recounts the disintegration of a family following the disappearance of six-year-old Marie. It is narrated fifteen years later through the first-person perspective of Marie's elder brother Yuichiro, now twenty-three and studying philosophy at university in Tokyo. Yuichiro, his brother Yuya, and their mother, are all locked in a cycle of grief, each seeking solace in different ways: the mother is immersed in a religious cult, Yuya is recovering from a nervous breakdown, and Yuichiro suffers from recurring nightmares from which he gains relief through self-harming.

Yuichiro's one close friend, a fellow student called Miki, gives him the contact details for Naomi, an SM queen. Around the same time, a TV director named Soma persuades him to undergo regressive hypnotherapy in order to try to uncover any repressed memories that may yield clues to the past.

Yuichiro experiences a kind of awakening as Naomi forces him to live out a sexual fantasy that enables him to connect to his own feelings and to the people in his life. As events take on an increasingly unreal tinge, Miki becomes alarmed and tries to stop him from attempting to heal himself through Naomi and Soma. Yet Miki is there whenever he needs her, his guardian angel of sorts.

Yuichiro descends into an increasingly erotic dreamlike world until he collapses into unconsciousness. In a climactic near-death experience, he exorcises the ghost of his sister, putting her soul to rest and thereby frees his family from the cycle of grief.


Taguchi skillfully draws the reader into the tragedy of Yuichiro's life, revealing the damaged psyche of her protagonist little by little, peeling back layers of his consciousness in much the same way as Naomi systematically breaks down his defences.

Yuichiro's feelings are raw, and his pain is almost palpable. As he achieves release and begins to connect with his environment once more, his sexual drive becomes overwhelming. Yet this is not sex to titillate; it is an expression of sheer energy that connects us to the world, a primitive urge closely connected to death and the life spirit. Ultimately it is a healing force, leading to Yuichiro's purification. The novel's climax provides a similarly cathartic experience for the reader following the build-up of tension throughout.

About the Author

Randy Taguchi first started publishing her work on the internet in 1996, and soon had around 100,000 people reading her site. Now with 14 novels and 21 essays published in Japanese, and one in English. Taguchi draws on modern psychology as well as ancient spiritual beliefs to create a powerful account of grief, pain, and healing. Her writing style is vivid, with expert pacing and economy of words, and a visual quality reminiscent of manga or cinema. Her first novel "Outlet," has been a long seller, with more than 800,000 copies printed (in Japan only) since 2000. "Outlet" was made into movie in 2000, and following year its sequel Antenna, was also filmed. "Dekireba Mukatsukazuni Ikitai" won the 2001 Fujin Koron Literary Award. In 2003, the English version of "Outlet" was published by Vertical.


PublisherFazi Editore
PublicationJuly, 2007
ISBN978 - 8876250316
Fazi Editore