It is the early eighties, and the housing industry is booming. Previously unpopulated mountainous areas of the Japanese countryside are being leveled to accommodate new waves of people. Similarly, a new wave of feminism, particularly a change in attitudes toward marriage and child-rearing, is growing among the women of Japan. Both the physical and social landscapes are in flux. In her early forties, married, and childless by choice, Kyoko has no compunction about getting what she wants. But when she begins a relationship with a man who is as traditional and conformist as they come, the result is at times uncomfortable, at others comical, but ultimately fatal. Beautifully written by Taeko Tomioka, a renowned poet, Building Waves is often droll in tone, but always touching in its portrayal of a culture divided, and ultimately swept away, by ferocious waves of change.