This book, set on a small island in Okinawa Prefecture was written by Maha Harada and won the "Japan Love Story award". It was also made into a movie in 2009. I have yet to see the movie.
Akio is a slightly disabled man who runs a shop with his beloved dog, Kafu. A few months ago he went on his very first trip to the Japanese mainland, organised by his childhood acquaintance, Shunichi. Shunichi, a guy popular with the girls, is always cracking jokes about Akio's bachelor-ness. As always, Akio grits his teeth, counts to three and smiles. Lonely, tired of Shunichi's remarks and at a shrine renown for suicides, Akio writes his wish on a piece of wood before returning to Okinawa. "Anyone want to be my wife?"
Three months later, Akio gets a letter from a woman named Sachi. "In response to your wish at the shrine, let me be your bride." Thinking it's a prank, Akio burns the letter and carries on with life. But the letter haunts him. Who would do such a thing? Was it real? Why? Who replies to wishes written at shrines?
Frustrated, Akio takes his dog for a walk along the beach. Along the way he bumps into a tourist. "Excuse me, I'm looking for Akio" says the beautiful woman. Shocked, Akio stutters as he answers. The woman smiles and says "Nice to meet you. I'm Sachi. Did you get my letter?"
In time, Sachi ends up lodging at Akio's home, helping out at his shop and trying (and failing) to cook meals. Akio finds himself falling for this clumsy yet beautiful woman even though he doesn't know much about her. He is scared to ask, for if he asks she might disappear. After all, this is all a dream, right? Who in their right mind would give up everything and fly to a small island in the middle of nowhere in order to answer a wish left by an unknown man at a shrine?