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Death In Midsummer And Other Stories
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Death In Midsummer And Other Stories

4.11 of 5 stars 4.11  ·  rating details  ·  1,644 ratings  ·  104 reviews
Recognized throughout the world for his brilliance as a novelist and playwright, Yokio Mishima is also noted as a master of the short story in his native Japan, where the form is practiced as a major art.
Paperback, New Edition, 192 pages
Published September 13th 1991 by Penguin Books Ltd. (first published 1950)
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(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Mariel
Jul 20, 2011 Mariel rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: snow angels
Recommended to Mariel by: Me! I did something right
Have you seen Yukio Mishima? He's a really buff Japanese guy. He might be carrying a big ass sword. He's probably wearing tighty whiteys because he was wearing little white underpants in every photo I've ever seen of him. How many really buff Japanese guys with swords in little white underwear can there be? SOMEONE must have seen him. Will you tell him that I changed my mind about thinking he was kinda good but not really favorite material? That maybe he was kinda too melodramatic for someone as ...more
Scoobs
its summer time in los angeles. so i know we are all thinking about suicide. if only i was a samurai. if only i had a blade. it would truly cut down on my bus ride from culver city to west hollywood. would booksoup miss me at all?

tosh would. he introduced me to mishima. to his videos on youtube and to shrader on dvd.

no worries, i'll be in for the tommy chong event tomorrow, but.....
Beki
horribly visceral and terrible at times, each of these stories subtly keeps us in the characters' present, often mundane moments. mishima covers the quiet death of children on a beach outside of tokyo, awfully repressed homosexuality in a kabuki theater, and the passing lives of former lovers in japan as they try to reconnect unexpectedly in downtown San Francisco. at once fantastic and reserved, the book is wonderfully moving reading- but the sort of moving that keeps you still. good shit.
Margarida
Que escrita maravilhosa. Não há outro adjectivo. Delicada, todavia de uma grande força e capacidade de nos mergulhar nas emoções das personagens.

Este livro reúne três contos: 'Morte em Pleno Verão', 'Patriotismo' e 'Onnagata'. A primeira história centra-se à volta de Tomoko e Masaru, um casal que perde os dois filhos mais velhos, um menino e uma menina de seis e cinco anos, respectivamente, afogados no mar, juntamente com a cunhada Yasue. Yasue era irmã da Masaru e tomava conta das crianças; sem
...more
Colette Ni
The reason I'm adding my old beloved books is because I simply can not find time to read new ones as life is hectic right now. I read this collection of short stories (for both writer and reader a convenient form in busy lives) a long time ago. I particularly loved The Pearl, but glancing through the title story to remember what beguiled me, I once again found myself in awe of the sheer brilliance of his descriptions of landscape before he leads you into the ordinary, then the tragedy in this st ...more
Sarah Magdalene
Suppose I could talk about "The Priest of Shiga Temple and His Love". But anything I said would just spoil it. Mishima deserves his mysteries kept for those interested enough to discover them personally. I will say that this story made think very deeply on the nature of love and spirituality. Human beings are such strange and perverse animals. They can spend a whole lifetime consciously trying to attain an abstract spiritual ideal only to throw it all away in an instant of futile passion. Desire ...more
Jain
This is an extraordinary collection of stories. My favorite, "Patriotism," is a beautiful and powerful story about a young general and his wife's response to the attempted coup d'etat in 1936. In other stories in the collection, Mishima deftly explores smaller dramas: the long aftermath of a family tragedy; disappointed love; infidelity; the results of a tasteless joke upon a group of friends.

I especially appreciated the stories' endings; sometimes they involved an unexpected twist, while other
...more
Jonathon
This guy has the dark side of humankind down. He knows what it is to be human and experience pain (or so it seems). Grieving, death, decay, truthful and raw emotion, etc. I hate to compare him to Hemingway (I have heard this comparison before, I am totally unoriginal and am stealing that comparison), but he is like a dark, brutal, more emotional Hemingway...From Japan! It seems his stories always have a snap at the end that the rest of the story leads up to. I can't think of a better example of ...more
Madhuri
I don't know whether to mark this book as read. And this is a dilemma I repeatedly suffer with short story collections. I have already read from it the stories I wanted to. I doubt if I will pick it again, but at the same time, I would like to remember those few stories. The powerful impact of Death in midsummer or the poetic nature of the suicide in Patriotism. I wonder if writing so beautifully about suicide is what drew Mishima to the romanticism of killing oneself.

My favourite was Death in
...more
João Roque
Sete pequenos contos estão insertos neste notável livro de Yukio Mishima.
E de todos eles, apenas um não me seduziu grandemente: “Garrafas- Termos”. Todos os outros têm suficientes motivos de interesse para que eu dê ao livro, no seu conjunto, cinco estrelas sem hesitar.
São contos muito diferentes entre si, nos temas, mas com alguns pontos comuns, nomeadamente serem contos que nos revelam o mundo japonês, como uma sociedade muito especial, com particularidades únicas. E claro, outro traço de uniã
...more
Rin
Yukio Mishima is one of the best modern writers of Japan.This book is one of his famous works, no doubt. Right. Stories in this book are really beautiful, enchanting , and poetic. His stories nail on tiny details to paint the overall pictures. There are tons of symbols (culture, politics etc) and implications behind the surface.Some of his stories are quite bitter about the modernization and Westernization of Japanese culture,the trying-too-hard effort to copy Western /American lifestyles of Jap ...more
Clint
Mishima shows himself to be excel in the short story as well as the novel in this collection, but the stories are a little harder to understand. There's one story that is actually FUNNY. Can anyone imagine Mishima writing a funny story? Overall, bleak, harsh, violent, beautiful, classic Mishima.
umberto
I preferred the fourth story, "The Priest of Shiga Temple and His Love", which is interestingly imaginative, penetrative and contemplative since Mishima's narrative is so superb and brilliant that, I think, few could surpass or think as his equals. In fact, there are 10 stories in the contents but we are informed this is “a collection of nine of the finest stories” (back cover) and I wondered why such contradictory information should exist like that. So I hoped the staff of the publishing compan ...more
Colleen
Death in Midsummer is one of the finest collections of short stories there are. Mishima was such an intense person, and he really captures the tension between modern Japan and it's complicated past, because it is in him. Of course, the story that anyone remembers who has read this collection is "Patriotism", about an official in the Japanese army who has learned of some kind of mutany in his ranks, and then goes home to commit sepuku, or hara kiri (disemboweling)with his loyal wife. It's a very ...more
Gabriel
Late in 2010, I was told to watch a movie: Mishima. Though the recommendation was for the music, there was something in watching the biopic that drove me to read something by the man. This collection of short stories was my introduction to his written work.

Overall, the span of styles and atmospheres created in this decidedly Japanese (yet still, to sound cliche, Universal) collection fascinated me from the start. That matched with the exquisite storytelling ability that Mishima demonstrates in e
...more
Gertrude & Victoria
Death in Midsummer and Other Stories is a wonderful collection of some of Mishima Yukio's finest short stories. His supreme command of language, in-depth understanding of human nature, and skill in covering a diverse range of subject matter is remarkable. He is without peer in Japan and the most versatile writer since the Meiji period.

Among the stories in this collection, the most complex and esoteric is The Priest of Shiga Temple and His Love. Mishima beautifully recreates a dream-like landscap
...more
Oğuzhan Eser
Kitaba adını veren öykü olan "Yaz Ortasında Ölüm" tam bir psikolojik savaş, acıyla dost olma ve ondan nefret etme hali. "Kanatlar" isimli öyküyle birlikte kitabı çok üst seviyelere taşıyorlar. Diğer öykülerden o tadı alamasamda okumaya değer.
Joao
Sete contos de Mishima, sendo que o primeiro, Morte em Pleno Verão, marca pela frieza e distanciamento da narrativa, quase indiferente ao horror da situação, e choca pela péssima tradução. Os dois últimos contos, Patriotismo e Onnagata, deslumbram e deliciam, o primeiro, muito masculino, pela tensão que cria e pela minúcia da descrição de um seppuku, o segundo, muito feminino, em marcante contraste com o anterior, pela delicadeza do triângulo amoroso entre um famoso onnagata (denominação dos ato ...more
Hikachi
Death in Midsummer is a collection of various short stories by Mishima. Even though I'm familiar with his longer works, I have to admit that his short stories are quite haunting in a pretty way. The vivid details of the characters and the surrounding environments were able to transport the readers to actually witness and relate to the characters.
Mishima's subtle method on conveying his characters's emotion and progress, including their issues played a great role here. So far, my favorites are t
...more
David
"Violence, homosexuality and the spiritual emptiness of post-war Japan: these were Mishima's key themes. But not all of these nine stories (and one play) exemplify them; for there was also a streak of wry, ironic humour. Here, then, is truly compelling reading. There is shock, explosion, illumination. Here is Mishima. Here is Japan."

That's the boast on tha back of my 1971 Penguin edition, and it's true!

I'm usually not a fan of characters taking themselves too seriously, so I'm not sure why I don
...more
Liz Thompson
Why can't Western universities incorporate more Eastern lit into the canon? I was lucky enough to have an Asia-phile prof at my first undergraduate institution who did just that. Mishima's work is subtle, yet more compelling than any thrills and spills books I've ever read. "Thermos Bottles" is just one example of the short stories in this collection that is a perfect art. Mishima effectively relays the quiet disillusion of marriage through the lens of a Japanese character that understands Ameri ...more
Spike Gomes
What is unique about Mishima is how intensely Japanese he is in his ethics and mores, yet he expresses himself in fiction written in a Western fashion. This certainly comes through more in his short stories than in his novels. It was once remarked to me by a Japanese student of mine that Mishima is not popular in his home country for two reasons, his right-wing politics and his very Western narrative aesthetics.

How to explain it? Well, Mishima expresses himself in the language of realism, even a
...more
Nick
Too tired to be elaborate

Will be punctual:

Death in Midsummer: First story. Character has a weird psychological attachment to grief. Very creepy. Psychological horror. Compelling writing.

3 Million Yen: Second. Gentle opening. They have a cozy relationship. Then the story turns almost bdsm conservative and eventually takes a dark and erotic and bleak direction. Such a strange and unexpected vibe switch.

Thermos Flasks: Prostitute has his genes. The genes!!! Its the genes. The fear is the connection
...more
Sarah
Often disturbing to read, but always intense and compelling.
Nicolás Rivas
Reading these stories I constantly had the feeling that there was something missing. An element in the space of feelings, a huge thing actually, but hidden and with no name. I was tempted to say that this belongs to the Japanese spirit, but I think that's too simplistic, and I haven't felt the same from other Japanese authors. Mishima looks straight into a human daemon and describes it perfectly without saying its name. This darkness, or third character, the pulling rope, drives the reading, and ...more
Louis
This collection, minus 'Patriotism': 4 stars, easily

This collection, with 'Patriotism': 2 stars, barely

Never have I read a more uncomplicated, unapologetic, unnuanced pro-suicide story. This is what's wrong with Japan.
Pq
Well, I love Mishima, but I feel this translation is awful. It renders his beautiful, if sometimes ostentatious prose, completely flat and uninviting. I must try to get a translation by the peerless Alfred H. Marks.
Holly
My World Lit class in high school forced me to read this and I have been grateful ever since. It is a great place to begin reading Mishima or any Japanese literature.
Alor Deng
When I first read Mishima's novels, I thought for sure his style of writing would suit the short story format. I am proven right by this brilliant collection. Ten stories, which, if written by ten different authors, might each be considered their best work. As it is, these are all written by Mishima, so I've graded them relatively.

Death in Midsummer - 9/10
Three Million Yen - 7/10
Thermos Bottles - 8/10
The Priest of Shiga Temple and His Love - 9/10
The Seven Bridges - 8.5/10
Patriotism - 9.5/10
Dojo
...more
Beka Sukhitashvili
განსაკუთრებით მომეწონა "სიკვდილი შუა ზაფხულში" და "წყლის ხმა". ბოლო, საერთოდ, ერთ–ერთი საუკეთესო მოთხრობაა რაც კი ოდესმე წამიკითხავს.
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Yukio Mishima (三島 由紀夫) is the pen name of Kimitake Hiraoka (平岡 公威) who was a Japanese author, poet and playwright, famous for both his highly notable post-war writings and the circumstances of his ritual suicide by seppuku.

Mishima wrote 40 novels, 18 plays, 20 books of short stories, and at least 20 books of essays, one libretto, as well as one film. A large portion of this oeuvre comprises books
...more
More about Yukio Mishima...
The Sailor Who Fell from Grace with the Sea Spring Snow Confessions of a Mask The Temple of the Golden Pavilion The Sound of Waves

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“She did not know it, but she was actually in despair at the poverty of human emotions. Was it not irrational that there was nothing to do except weep when ten people died, just as one wept for but a single person?” 1 likes
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