Book Topics

The Crimson Thread of Abandon: Stories

Oct 4, 2014

The Crimson Thread of Abandon: Stories

by Madeline Barbush

It’s a wonder “The Crimson Thread of Abandon” was never translated into English before. Shuji Terayama (1935-83) was a provocative artist and outlaw author, and his 20 stories fall nothing short of this reputation. Each borrows and mocks the conventions of a classic fairy ...

Time Killers

Sep 27, 2014

Time Killers

by Catherina Depaz

“Time Killers” is a collection of short stories by Kazue Kato in the realm of fantasy. The beautiful artwork takes the reader from the sea to the stars and across the globe. Time Killers, by Kazue Kato Translated by John Werry.Viz Media, Manga. The ...

Oh, Tama!

Sep 20, 2014

Oh, Tama!

by David Cozy

Mieko Kanai, a prize-winning poet, eminent critic and author of experimental fiction that evokes comparisons to the works of Borges and Kafka, has also, in her “Mejiro” series, produced a series of novels notably lighter in tone. In these books, two of which have ...

Netsuke

Sep 20, 2014

Netsuke

by Madeline Barbush

The British Museum’s Noriko Tsuchiya compiles an intricate selection of netsuke, a prized Edo Period (1603-1867) art form of miniature sculptures. Her book contains 100 photographs, paired with color illustrations to contrast composition and artistic expression. Netsuke, by Noriko Tsuchiya.The British Museum, Art book. ...

A world of fear for Japan's  shut-ins

Sep 13, 2014

A world of fear for Japan's shut-ins

by Tim Hornyak

Several years ago, a vogue of interest in shut-ins, or hikikomori, saw researchers from France touring Japan and meeting reclusive youths. Such was the prevalence of the disorder, said psychologist Nicolas Tajan, that “if you ask people in Japan about hikikomori, almost everyone will ...

Low City, High City

| Sep 13, 2014

Low City, High City

by Mark Schilling

Best known for his translations of “The Tale of Genji” and the fiction of Yasunari Kawabata, for which the author won a Nobel Prize, Edward G. Seidensticker was also an accomplished essayist and historian. Low City, High City, by Edward G. Seidensticker.KNOPF, Nonfiction. The ...

Millennium Snow vol. 1-2

Sep 13, 2014

Millennium Snow vol. 1-2

by Catherina Depaz

Bisco Hatori, author of the popular manga series and anime “Ouran High School Host Club,” delivers a romantic comedy with a supernatural twist with “Millennium Snow,” a series that will make any fan of shōjo (young girl) manga blush. Millennium Snow vol. 1-2, by ...

The Journey

Sep 6, 2014

The Journey

by Michael Hoffman

On most lists of great 20th-century Japanese writers, Jiro Osaragi’s name does not figure. He was popular and respected in his own day (1898-1973), mostly as a writer of historical fiction, but literary immortality has eluded him. So? The Journey, Jiro Osaragi, Translated by ...

Japan's World Heritage Sites

Sep 6, 2014

Japan's World Heritage Sites

by Daniel Robson

It was in September 2003 that I visited Kiyomizu-dera — exactly 11 years ago. I was in Japan for the first time, and during an excursion to meet an old friend in Osaka, she suggested driving us down the road to Kyoto to see ...