The Ink Dark Moon

| Jan 24, 2015

The Ink Dark Moon

by Kris Kosaka

No other period in Japan’s literary history was as dominated by women as the Heian Period (794-1185). Most Japanophiles know names such as Sei Shonagon (“The Pillow Book”) or Murasaki Shikibu (“The Tale of Genji”) for their contributions to the world of literature, but ...

Life of a Counterfeiter

| Jan 10, 2015

Life of a Counterfeiter

by Iain Maloney

Yasushi Inoue’s “Life of a Counterfeiter,” translated by Michael Emmerich, contains three stories: the eponymous novella and two shorter pieces, “Reeds” and “Mr Goodall’s Gloves.” Life of a Counterfeiter, by Yasushi Inoue, Translated by Michael Emmerich.Pushkin Press, Fiction. “Life of a Counterfeiter” concerns a ...

The Woman in the Dunes

| Dec 27, 2014

The Woman in the Dunes

by Kris Kosaka

Certain books must be read, even with the knowledge that the reading will be painful. Kobo Abe’s masterpiece “The Woman in the Dunes” is one such book. Called an “existential fable,” it is no surprise that Abe’s favorite writers were Franz Kafka, Friedrich Nietzsche ...

Deep River

| Dec 13, 2014

Deep River

by Iain Maloney

In “Deep River” a group of elderly Japanese tourists and a couple join a tour of holy Buddhist sites in India. Motivated by different forms of grief and guilt, each is searching for healing. The narrative involves four main characters: Isobe, recently widowed, Kiguchi, ...

In Praise of Shadows

| Nov 22, 2014

In Praise of Shadows

by Kris Kosaka

In Praise of Shadows, by Junichiro Tanizaki.Leete’s Island Books, Nonfiction. Revered novelist Junichiro Tanizaki’s essay, “In Praise of Shadows,” is a must-read for anyone interested in the darker side of the Land of the Rising Sun. Everything about this slim tome — from its ...