Parade

“Parade” by Shuichi Yoshida (Japan) Review From a first novel to a first attempt at a new genre by a well-known writer, this year’s Summer Reading selection of crime fiction covered a wide range of writing styles. Readers’ opinions varied from book to book, so it was no surprise that “Parade” won the Best Summer…

The Lake

“The Lake” by Banana Yoshimoto (Japan) Review Mystical and mysterious were some of the words readers used to describe this book that they thoroughly enjoyed. Most were familiar with the author having read other of her books and they liked her writing style, which they found captured the atmosphere well. They were drawn to the…

The Woman in the Dunes

“The Woman in the Dunes” by Kobo Abe (Japan) Review The first impressions of members of the Book Club were very mixed: some liked the book, whereas some did not like it all! They found the situation the protagonist finds himself in very depressing. The repetitive shovelling of sand daily made them think about the…

Autobiography of a Geisha

“Autobiography of a Geisha” by Sayo Masuda (Japan) Extract and Comment That child will be grown up by now, and if he hasn’t forgotten me, whenever he sees a crying child he’ll want to say a kind word and wipe the kid’s nose. And when that kid grows up, he’ll do the same. To do…

Some Prefer Nettles

“Some Prefer Nettles” by Junichiro Tanizaki (Japan) Synopsis and Review “Some Prefer Nettles”: each to their own taste Written in 1929 and generally considered one of Tanizaki’s finest works, “Some Prefer Nettles” deals with the ramifications of a collapsing marriage. Within this context, which seems to be autobiographical, it also examines the conflict between traditional…