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The Lake

3.69  ·  Rating Details  ·  965 Ratings  ·  73 Reviews
The Lake is the history of an obsession. It traces a man's sad pursuit of an unattainable perfection, a beauty out of reach, admired from a distance, unconsummated. Homeless, a fugitive from an ambiguous crime, his is an incurable longing that drives him to shadow nameless women in the street and hide in ditches as they pass above him, beautiful and aloof. For their beauty ...more
Paperback, 160 pages
Published 1978 by Kodansha International (first published 1954)
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Aug 17, 2013 Praj rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: yk, にほん

To the singing oars,
Jump the watery imp,
Moon-lit skies wake,
Tender palms aglow,
Lonely hearts to split,
Weeping willows below,
Cages with open doors,
Fireflies over the lake.

On a nearby tree, the screeching became louder with every passing minute. I knew it then, it was already past midnight. The bats were probably having a little party; for once their pairs of lustrous eyes were not being meticulously counted by a silly woman amid the flickering of the street light. I did not care about these noctu
Apr 23, 2011 Mariel rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: lost and found
Recommended to Mariel by: every breath I take
Shelves: my-love-life
"Have you ever had that experience... a feeling of profound regret after passing some stranger in the street? I've had it often. I think to myself, 'What a delightful looking person!' or 'What a beautiful woman!' or 'I've never seen anyone quite as attractive as that before.' It happens when I'm just strolling around the streets, or sitting next to a stranger in the theatre or walking down the steps from a concert hall. But once they've gone, I know I'll probably never meet them again in my life ...more
Ian Not His Real Name
Oct 19, 2013 Ian Not His Real Name rated it really liked it
Shelves: nippon
I’ll Find You

I’ve just read three Kawabata works in succession to try and appreciate the merits of this Nobel Prize Winner.

Based on one fairly distracted reading, I have to say that this was the weakest of the three novels.

I would probably rate it at three stars, possibly 3 , but I’ll increase it to four, because of the quality of the prose.

Less than Exquisite Fantasy

The prose is precise and economical, insofar as it describes external realities. It is as graceful and evocative as brush strokes
Quân Khuê
Apr 03, 2016 Quân Khuê rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Mỗi nhà văn hay có một vài chủ đề ưa thích, trở đi trở lại. Với Kawabata đó là ám ảnh về cái đẹp.

Hồ là câu chuyện về Gimpei, một người đàn ông kỳ quái, bị ảm ánh bởi vẻ đẹp của những cô gái, đồng thời, mang trong người mặc cảm về cái xấu. Ám ảnh làm cho anh ta trở nên kỳ quái, thậm chi bệnh hoạn, nhưng tận cùng trong anh ta là một tâm hồn cô đơn và dễ bị tổn thương. Có lẽ phần nào Gimpei cũng là hình ảnh nước Nhật thời hậu chiến.

Văn của Kawabata bảng lảng như mặt hồ đầy sương khói, mang vẻ khó
May 31, 2016 Huy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nobel
Một cuốn sách đẹp để đọc trong một ngày âm u như hôm nay. Kawabata miêu tả về cái đẹp, dục tính và sự ám ảnh tràn ngập nỗi buồn và lãng đãng như mặt hồ mù sương.
Nỗi ám ảnh về cái đẹp, về mặc cảm của sự thiếu hoàn hảo, ám ảnh vì quá khứ không trọn vẹn hay sự chối từ , những ám ảnh ấy tạo thành những ảo ảnh ngăn cách họ với thế giới và cả hạnh phúc mà họ chẳng thể nào đạt tới.
Jayaprakash Satyamurthy
Dec 29, 2011 Jayaprakash Satyamurthy rated it it was amazing
Wow, that was dark.

None of Kawbata's books that I've read so far have been what you'd call light-hearted. But it felt to me as if this one plumbed depths of the human spirit that even Kawabata didn't usually descend to in his fiction.

The technique of this novel plays around with linear narrative, giving us the whole picture of a sad, twisted man's life and psyche in bits and pieces, saving some crucial revelations for the very end while circling around motifs whose meaning is only gradually el
Apr 26, 2016 Sagahigan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"Hồ" viết về nỗi buồn mênh mông của kẻ suốt đời khao khát cái đẹp - một khao khát vượt trên nhục dục tuy có bao gồm nhục dục - trong khi bản thân mình, ít nhất là về mặt thể xác, hoàn toàn đối lập với cái đẹp. Càng bị ám ảnh bởi sự xấu xí của thể xác mình, gã đàn ông trong truyện, một cách vô thức, càng bất an - như thể sợ rằng sự xấu xí về thể xác của y cũng sẽ ám sang và làm xấu xí cả linh hồn y -. và, càng bất an, y càng khổ sở bám lẵng nhẵng theo cái đẹp - những cô gái đẹp mà với y là hiện t ...more
Nguyễn Hoàng Vũ
1. Nói chung không thích bằng những cuốn của Kawabata mình đã đọc.
2. Kawabata không viết cuốn này năm 2054. Nhã Nam có một sai lầm ngớ ngẩn ở trang 2.
3. Có cách nào nói bookaholic đừng đóng tên trang web lên bìa sách nữa không? Bookaholic không liên quan gì tới cuốn sách này hết. Cái công add sách lên goodreads cũng không đủ lớn tới mức phải để lại dấu ấn đâu. Các bạn khác có add sách cũng nên chọn bìa nguyên mẫu giùm nhen!
Com'era successo anche con "La casa delle belle addormentate", Kawabata è riuscito con la sua scrittura a farmi provare quel totale senso di tristezza, malinconia e nostalgia, soprattutto nostalgia, "grazie" o per colpa (dipende da che punto la si veda) ogni minimo dettaglio e/o particolare che ci circonda costantemente.
Kawabata esercita uno strano e potente potere su di me, per il momento ho letto solo due suoi libri (e ne possiedo altri) ed entrambi si sono incollati alle mie mani e come sangu
Jan 20, 2013 David rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: big-red-circle
In my head, Kawabata is the kindly, elegant grandfather of J. fiction, writing novels about the light falling across scrolls in tokonoma alcoves.

But then I pick up a book and remember "Oh, yes. 'Japanese mental' didn't start with Mishima or Oe."

"The Lake": Do you remember Patrick Swayze's character sobbing in his "kiddie-porn dungeon" at the end of "Donnie Darko"? This is the Japanese literary equivalent of those two seconds of American cinema.

Certainly with his later works that were serialised
Karlo Mikhail
Aug 28, 2011 Karlo Mikhail rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Lake by Yasunari Kawabata begins with a fugitive entering a bath. He is Gimpei, a self-conscious old man with ugly feet who was suspended from teaching for seducing his teenage student. Gimpei recently took a bag dropped by a woman containing two hundred thousand yen and ran away from home, fearing the police will be after him.

Fragmented scenes and memories flashed in his head while he was bathed by the establishment’s pretty attendant. The voice and the body of the young girl stirred up his
Samir Rawas Sarayji
The Lake is the second book of Nobel laureate Kawabata that I have read. Unlike the House of the Sleeping Beauties and Other Stories, which I thought to be a remarkable text particularly the title story, The Lake came across as a frustrating work in terms of style.

Briefly, it is the story of a homeless stalker, Gimpei, who follows certain women that he finds posses a certain quality of beauty. What we know of Gimpei is that he was a former school teacher until he stalked one of his students, and
May 16, 2016 Tessa rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites, mindfuck
Hauntingly good. I can totally see why Mr. Kawabata won the Nobel prize for literature. His writing has so much soul in it you feel kind of lost in the intensity of the character's feelings. Rich and complex this is not a book for action lovers, but rather more for those who have a contemplative mind and enjoy watching life as it unfolds.
Feb 12, 2009 Brian rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Brian by: Desi
Shelves: read-2009, nobel, asian
Kawabata is still one of my favorite Japanese authors. I planned my trip to Kyoto by reading The Old Capital. I learned about the meditative quality of the game Go in The Master of Go. And in A Thousand Cranes Kawabata taught me about the tea ceremony and love. Now, after finishing The Lake I possess understanding of ugly feet and the beauty of young girls.

I've heard people complain about this book; about it's subject matter. I've heard say it was one of Kawabata's worse efforts. And I just don'
Dec 25, 2012 S. rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: white-rabbit, alice
according to goodreads statistics, みづうみ is read to only a tenth the degree of Kawabata's other works, and perhaps justifiably so. if Kawabata's masterpieces are "works one must read before one dies," it's possible to go through life without ever reading Mizuumi, but why? a classic Kawabata in that every word counts, and the overall effect is just as powerful as any single word-choice. a sea of impressions that is somehow powerfully united, and capable of eliciting the strongest feeling in those ...more
Something serendipitous about coming to Yasunari Kawabata's 1974 short novel, "The Lake" pretty much by accident [just grabbed it off the shelf on a whim while looking for some Mishima books:], especially after having read Tanizaki's "The Key" and Marquez's "...Melancholy Whores" and Duras' "The Lover," because yet again we have older male figures trying to sustain their own fading youth in the company of younger women. The ostensible protagonist of this book is an unwitting thief, and the first ...more
Jul 10, 2015 Dina rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: good
Me gustó mucho, es el primer libro que leo de Kawabata y seguramente leeré más. Sí les ha gustado "El túnel" de Sábato, seguro les gustará éste. Es un libro envolvente con una narrativa simple y un personaje principal intrigante, obsesivo y complejo.
Jun 01, 2012 Traveller marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Oh, lookie what I just by chance found last night when dusting off a shelf of books I had inherited from my father's library without looking at the titles properly!

A 1974 first edition copy!

I'll definitely be hanging on to this, dust or no dust!

It's a hardcover with a dust jacket and all. Can you believe I never noticed it before!
Jul 10, 2015 Mohammad rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
أول قراءة لياسوناري كاواباتا ويبدو أنها لن تكون الأخيرة.
بدأت بقراءة هذا الكتاب وفي ذهني تساؤلات عن ماذا يمكن أن يقدم كاتب ياباني حصل على جائزة نوبل للأدب؟
ولم يخيب ظني كثيرا! إن كنت تظن نفسك أمام رواية ممتعة وشيقة في كل أجزائها فمكانك ليس هنا!
لا أنكر أني استشعرت مللا في الكثير من أجزاء الرواية. لكن كان علي إنهائها لأنني أعلم أن هذا النوع من اللوحات الفنية لا يكون جميلا إلا باكتمال أجزاءه.
قد تبدو رواية البحيرة كمجموعة هلوسات متداخلة في بعض الأحيان. أو ككتابات شخص مخمور.
لكن بعد إنهائك الكتاب تعلم أ
Ernest Junius
as any of Kawabata's book. you can't read it once, you must read it at least twice to completely understand it (well maybe it's just me, I am a bit dim you see). I read this with mixed emotions. of course at some points, I feel sad, and sentimental, at other point I feel something funny about the story—literally funny. maybe I still don't understand it completely.

pretty much, it is a story about a sad male character that adores beauty (or you can say, he is into a pursuit of beauty), as he keep
Jun 28, 2011 max rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: borrowed
One can understand why Mishima Yukio was willing to nominate the older Kawabata for the Nobel Prize, a campaign that culminated in the first Japanese winner of the award in 1967. _The Lake_, first published in Japan in 1954, takes the great Japanese literary theme of illicit desire, experienced as religious fervor and bearing the threat of great shame and social ostracization. It also bridges these themes into the 20th century, opening them for exploitation for the next generation of Japanese wr ...more
Laura  Yan
This is a very strange book--a very Japanese book, in style, and perhaps, slightly in substance. I've never read Kawabata before, but I guess this is supposed to be a bit of a departure from his usual works. Though it is unusual, it is not dark in the way that I anticipated. The narrator is an obsessive man, a stalker, who narrates the present and weaves it with a series of interwoven scenes from his past. The writing is minimalist, yet ethereal, and the novel itself is dreamlike(also, very shor ...more
Batool Hameed
رواية موغلة بالتفاصيل المعنية بالعلاقات الانسانية، علاقة الصديق بصديقه، الخادمة بسيدها، الذات ومونولوجاتها العاطفية وعلاقتها بالماديات! بيد أن الاسهاب أفقد الرواية فتنة النهاية ودهشتها. كانت تجربة مختلفة على أية حال
Cú Mù
Như một làn khói, thủ pháp trong Hồ của Kawabata dẫn độc giả ra ngoài ranh giới của câu chuyện kể độc lập, tiến sâu vào nỗi buồn của những cảnh người, đi giữa quá khứ và hiện thực. Bi cảm về cái đẹp và âm bản của nó qua làn khói ấy trong tiểu thuyết này vừa dịu dàng, vừa ngập ngộn nỗi đau âm ỉ nhưng ý nhị đến kỳ lạ...
Bogdan Rat
O surpriza extrem de placuta, Lacul de Kawabata, care contine 3 lucrari: Lacul, roman scurt, si 2 povestiri: Bratul si Granic se va scutura.
Una din acele rare scriituri care tin in priza cititorul pe toata durata lecturii.

In Lacul se gaseste una dintre cele mai puternice imagini/viziuni intalnite in opera lui pana acum de catre mine si merita citata. (Ginpei are o relatie cu o fata, Hisako, care pana la un anumit punct ii era eleva la liceu, asta pana cand s-a aflat. El este complexat de ideea c
Apr 16, 2011 Sara rated it it was amazing
Not quite up to Snow Country standards in terms of subtle, flawless writing but honestly nothing is. It's still Kawabata so it's beautifully written, and the main character is such a fucking weirdo that it's basically enough to carry the whole book. Probably my third favorite after snow country and house of sleeping beauties. I liked it a little better than 1000 cranes. I think I'm going to read master of go next. What a writer.
Jun 02, 2010 Melita rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I love this book. Perhaps there will be readers who can't stomach the idea of reading a book about a neurotic man's obsession with the beauty of adolescent girls, but it is so much than that. Reality for Gimpei is horribly ugly and grotesque just like his hideous deformed feet that he is obsessed with beauty embodied by adolescent girls, rather than letting beauty fleet by he pursues it.
Ali Alghanim
اسلوب روائي فريد ،تتداخل فيه الشخصيات كقطع " البزل " ،فعليك أن تكون حذرا ،متحفزا كي لا تسقط قطعة منها. .اﻷحداث بسيطة لكنها غنية بالتفاصيل و الحوارات العميقة السلسة.
شاب في منتصف الثلاثين من عمره ينهمك في مطاردة الفتيات.

- نال الكاتب جائزة نوبل لﻵداب عام 1986 على هذه الرواية.

* إن سرا نحتفظ به يكون مشبعا بالرقة ،مليئا بالسعادة. و عندما يتسرب يصبح متعطشا للانتقام كأنه إبليس!
Oct 18, 2015 Ray rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
Not sure what to make of this book.

Ever so slightly sinister meanderings of a former teacher who gets his kicks from following girls around, interspersed with some insights into the lives of his followees.

Interesting in the way that Japanese authors often are - a very different world view.
أسلُوب الكاتب متقفّز يزيد غمُوض الأحداث. تآرة تجدُك مع بطل القصّة جيمبِي ومآ يدور بذهنِه و حَوله, ثم فجأةً في واقعة في جانب شخصيّة رئيسية أخرى, و كرّة أخرى عند البحيرة و هكذا.. ليس صعبًا فهم متى أنت بحَاضر الشّخصيّآت أو بمآضيها, إلّا أن التوزيع هذا قد يجلب ارتبآك إذ يحدث أحيانًا في ذروة حدثٍ ما فبغتةً تتحوّل عنه لحَدث آخر. القصّة بمُجملها عن رجُلٍ يهوَى مُطاردة النساء و الشابّات, بحثًا عن شريكَة. به علّة جسدية ورثهاعن وآلده تُصيبة بإحباط دائم آن تجدّد صورتها في ذهنِه. البُحيرة لها ماضٍ خاص لدى ج ...more
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Yasunari Kawabata (川端 康成) was a Japanese short story writer and novelist whose spare, lyrical, subtly-shaded prose works won him the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1968, the first Japanese author to receive the award. His works have enjoyed broad international appeal and are still widely read.

Nobel Lecture: 1968
More about Yasunari Kawabata...

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“إن العمل الشائن المقترف يرتبط بمقترفه، ويحكم عليه باقتراف أعمال شائنة أخرى، هكذا تتكون العادات السيئة.” 8 likes
“A secret, if it’s kept, can be sweet and comforting, but once it leaks out it can turn on you with a vengeance.” 7 likes
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