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Japan: A Traveler's Literary Companion

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3.59  ·  Rating Details ·  27 Ratings  ·  9 Reviews
This collection guides the reader through the complexity that is Japan. Although frequently misunderstood as a homogenous nation, Japan is a land of tremendous linguistic, geographical, and cultural diversity. Hino Keizo leads the reader through Tokyo's mazes in "Jacob's Tokyo Ladder." Nakagami Kenji explores the ghostly, mythology-laden backwoods of Kumano. Atoda Takashi ...more
Paperback, 256 pages
Published May 1st 2006 by Whereabouts Press
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Katie
Jun 06, 2009 Katie rated it it was amazing
If you're going to Japan and looking for a literary companion, it's definitely worth the space in your suitcase. I read this at a resort in Hakone in between soaks in the onsen, so maybe that colored my enjoyment of it, but this was a really nice selection of stories. Even though most of them were pretty sad. I'm going to look into reading more by some of these authors now. Hadn't heard of most of them before.
Jeffrey
May 19, 2010 Jeffrey rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)
A collection of quirky stories set in various places throughout Japan. The purpose of this collection was to give a number of stories that would represent, through literature, different places in Japan. Here is an NPR interview with the editor.
Deon Mixon
Feb 28, 2016 Deon Mixon rated it it was amazing
If you like/love anything about Japan, this is for you. These Japanese authors were very contemplative. They were delicate in their ideas and subtle with their literary approaches. It's all about seeing their experiences, even if they were fiction. The title of this book holds everything together well. That's for sure.
Patricia
Jul 08, 2014 Patricia rated it liked it
This is a book of short stories by various Japanese authors, ably translated into English. Most of them were written quite a number of years ago and show that even in a different time and place we are basically the same. I found them quietly enjoyable and actually quite thought-provoking.
Maria
Aug 07, 2011 Maria added it
I thought it was a really interesting collection of stories. They have a mystical, fantastical element to them. Very interesting. They also did a great job of selecting stories which reflect the regional variations of the country.
Sarah Brandel
The stories in this collection were a bit too literary for me. I was hoping for more plot. Still, a very fast read.
Richard Janzen
Jul 27, 2011 Richard Janzen rated it liked it
A fairly interesting collection of stories. Very descriptive...strong sense of setting as the main character in many of the stories. Kind of magical in places.
Lawrence
Apr 09, 2011 Lawrence rated it liked it
If you are interested in Japanese culture it's a good read but keep in mind that it's literature and best read if know more about the culture before reading this book. I got lost a bit.
Lindsay-Jean
Lindsay-Jean rated it liked it
May 19, 2009
Jodi Hitzhusen
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Bruce
Dec 02, 2016 Bruce added it
Wishing to provide the reader with a sense of both the excellence and diversity of 20th century Japanese literature, a diversity often based upon the nation’s diversity of peoples and geography, Angles has crafted this collection of twelve stories from twelve eminent authors, including the Nobel Prize winning Kawabata Yasunari.

The stories are indeed fascinating, each utterly distinct from its companions and equally insightful into the dilemmas and psychologies of different people throughout the
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