Published for the first time in the UK, one of Japans greatest modern female writers In the late nineteenth century, Tomo, the faithful wife of a government official, is sent to Tokyo, where a heartbreaking task is awaiting her. From among hundreds of geishas and daughters offered up for sale by their families she must select a respectable young girl to become her husbands new lover. Externally calm, but torn apart inside, Tomo dutifully begins the search for an official mistress. The Waiting Years was awarded Japans most prestigious literary award, the Noma Prize.