The Housekeeper and the Professor is a touching story about an unusual friendship. The professor was a college mathematics professor, but as the result of an accident, he has severe memory loss and he rarely leaves his house. The housekeeper is hired by the professor's sister-in-law through an agency, and is assigned to cook and clean for the professor. The housekeeper is a single parent with a ten-year-old son who is allowed to come to the professor's home after school and stay for dinner. The housekeeper and her son develop a wonderful friendship with the very needy, but intelligent professor.
This book was originally published in Japanese in 2003, but this English translation is very easy to read. It is a simple story containing great emotion and depth, as well as some interesting math facts. The interaction of the characters in this book encouraged me to think about relationships in terms of selfless concern for the welfare of others, and how often our own selfish feelings preclude these possibilities from our lives.
Recommended by Kristi Burr