Boy
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Boy

3.31 of 5 stars 3.31  ·  rating details  ·  126 ratings  ·  21 reviews
Internationall renowned film auteur Takeshi Kitano has been applauded for his challenging portrayals of manhood and men, most notably rogue figures. Discerning fans of his cinematic oeuvre, however, have also appreciated the lyrical sensibility that infuses even his most violent works. In Boy, Kitano's essential vision is filtered through crystalline prose and the prism of...more
Hardcover, 185 pages
Published August 14th 2007 by Vertical (first published 2007)
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TK421
I am being generous with my three stars here; it was probably closer to a 2.5.

The three stories that make up this book are male-dominated tales dealing with brotherhood, fathers and sons relationships, loss, and what its like for a boy to begin his journey toward manhood. As I said, they were okay.

I have not read anything else by this author, nor have I seen any of the many movies he has made. To be honest, with this collection as my standard, I am not going to rush to the videostore or library...more
Rachel
American fans of Takeshi Kitano know him primarily as a writer/director of and actor in Yakuza films, but in his native Japan, he's a huge presence. He's had a varied career, beginning as a stand-up comedian and moving on to TV and films, and later in life becoming a novelist, poet, and painter. He's most often compared to Quentin Tarantino, who I like well enough, but artistically ... er, no. In his spare time, Kitano writes literary and social criticism; in Tarantino's spare time, he guest-jud...more
Our Abiko
Boy is about endurance. It is a collection of three short stories, each told from the point of view of boys coming of age in Japan. Although there are three different lads, they could easily be the same boy as he grows up from primary school to junior high and finally high school student.
The stories are about enduring what must be endured, whether it be a fever in an undokai sports day, the militaristic rituals every Japanese kid must scream and march their way through in elementary school; the...more
Don Jaucian
Strange that a book this quiet and tempered is written by the man who made Takeshi's Castle and Zaitoichi. The three stories in Boy are disarmingly quiet; little stories about the male psyche during the precarious years of adolescence. They carry the serene stillness of Japanese narratives that we've known through the stories of Banana Yoshimoto and Haruki Murakami. The stories bear no pretenses, they are just straightforward narratives mapping out fragments of lives; fragments that are substant...more
Klim
Довольно удивительно открыть для себя писательское творчество Такеши Китано, и вдвойне удивительнее было начать это знакомство с такой легкой, и, можно сказать, проникновенной его книги.
Три рассказа, три разных персонажа, три совершенно разные истории. Но во всех них есть одно общее, заключающееся в том, что все три истории повествуются от лица молодого подростка. И будь то воспоминания двух взрослых братьев о школьной эстафете из далекого школьного детства, или о двух братьях, помешаных на любв...more
John
I got this book as an ARC a couple of years ago at BookExpo. In the ordinary way, even though it says in big letters on the front of ARCs that they're not to be regarded as final versions, the assumption is that this is as near as dammit the identical text to the one that'll be published. Not so in this instance: the version of the text I was reading is a sort of rough first draft of the translation, complete with obvious errors and clearly sans even the most basic copyediting. Presumably everyo...more
Caro
Each story flows well with the one before it, which causes each story to seem progressively better but actually creates a vivid, more enjoyable whole. Three stories embody a series of vignettes narrated similarly to memories from childhood. The title "Boy" complements and directly speaks to major boyhood themes of adolescence although girls could definitely relate as well. There is a boy protagonist who varies slightly between each story but often has a brother or problems with other family memb...more
Stéphanie
Boy est une série de trois nouvelles explorant la thématique de l’enfance.
La première nouvelle met en scène deux frères qui se remémorent un évènement particulier survenu il y a 30 ans. : la Fête du Sport de leur école primaire. La seconde conte l’histoire de deux frères persécutés par leurs camarades de classe et qui se réfugient dans l’observation des étoiles, passe-temps préféré de leur père décédé. Enfin dans la dernière nouvelle, un ado passionné d’Histoire fugue pour aller visiter la vill...more
Hui Lin
The reason I chose to read this book is because of its cover. But after reading it, I was amazed by how three simple childhood stories can be so touching and meaningful. There are three stories in this book, The Champion in a Padded Kimono, The Nest of Star, and Okame-san. My favorite one out of the three was The Champion in a Padded Kimono. This story starts with two brothers as grown man having a conversation, and then the story goes back to the time when the brothers are still children. One o...more
Mikael Kuoppala
Takeshi Kitano has made a reputation for himself as a comedian, an actor and later an award winning film director of international acclaim. He also has a literary career, and finally one of his books has gotten translated into English.

"Boy" is a collection of three independent stories that together form a thematic arc about the development of a boy. Each story focuses on a different point in that development ranging from childhood to adolescence.

The book is nothing exactly phenomenal, but Kitano...more
George Ilsley
This is a collection of three short stories, which uses a large font and double spacing to achieve the appearance of being book length. The stories themselves were slight as well, and tended to diminish each other. If one story is about a boy and his brother, perhaps the next story should attempt a different focus. I understand this writer is a TV personality in Japan. That perhaps explains a lot.
Marc Weidenbaum
Feb 08, 2008 Marc Weidenbaum added it
Recommends it for: Kitano fans, Japanophiles, short-story fans
This was written and published by Takeshi Kitano in 1987. That's a few years after he starred in Merry Christmas, Mr. Lawrence, and a few before he directed his first film. It contains three short stories, originally collected in Japan under the title Shonen, about young boys doing what they do: competing in school sports, contemplating running away, experiencing their first taste of interpersonal frisson with a girl.

The question of how any of these innocents grows up to be one of the tough guy...more
Tosh
Beat Takeshi's book I am afraid is not that interesting. He's known in the U.S. for his sometimes really good films - but in Japan he's a major TV star. He has a talk show or two and in many ways he is sort of like the Japanese version of David Letterman. He's quite a force in Japanese showbiz and .... everything else.

Nevertheless this collection of three short stories are basically so-what. All of them deal with youth told through the eyes of a young person - and .... so what? Strange choice fo...more
Gabriel Strange
Quick, fun and light hearted. Amazing Takeshi Kitano wrote this, I am only familiar with his film "Blood and Bones". That being on the opposite spectrum of this novel; long, painful and relentless.

I think the main thing this man is able to capture is the spirit of men from all walks of life. Not life-changing, but a good read. The three short stories should be read consecutively, they are somehow progressive yet unrelated.
Jennifer
Learned of Takeshi Kitano via a Tarantino-esque gangster film called Outrage. He's a famous actor/comedian in Japan. Saw this recent translation of short stories on boyhood in Japan in a museum gift shop of all places. In sum, I hope he's a better actor than writer, though some blame may belong to the translator. Fine if you want a light, fast read, but not especially memorable.
Andrea
Tres historias simples sobre chicos, algo así como pequeñas aventuras de hermanos -excepto en la última. Creo que mi favorita es la segunda, Nest of Stars.
Ninguna me resultó cautivante, es un librito sin pretensiones. Se agradece que no tenga el humor(comedia) de Kitano, que honestamente no lo entiendo.
Bjorg Sveins
The stories are so sad. I hope that the young people of Japan do not all live such difficult lives. But, the stories are well written. One gets very close to the young people and feels with them.
s
i am glad i picked this book from the library! i love all 3 stories especially the last one, which is Okamesan...makes me sad after reading it.
Bryan Pascua
It's a good book about being a child. Emotions felt by the characters are true and universal.
Ying
simple, elegant tales that read like Kitano's movies- themes include independence, love, courage; beautiful portraits of emotional development/awakening of adolescence.
Clare Hyam
Clare Hyam marked it as to-read
Sep 15, 2014
Combo
Combo marked it as to-read
Aug 24, 2014
Brian
Brian added it
Aug 18, 2014
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Asakusa Kid Nascita Di Un Guru "Beat" Takeshi Kitano La Vie en gris et rose Niño

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