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Parasite Eve

3.55 of 5 stars 3.55  ·  rating details  ·  640 ratings  ·  79 reviews
When Dr. Nagashima loses his wife in a mysterious car crash, he is overwhelmed with grief but also an eerie sense of purpose; he becomes obsessed with reincarnating his dead wife. Her donated kidney is transplanted into a young girl with a debilitating disorder, but the doctor also feels compelled to keep a small sample of her liver in his laboratory. When these cells star ...more
Hardcover, 320 pages
Published October 1st 2005 by Vertical (first published April 2003)
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Norwegian Wood by Haruki MurakamiThe Wind-Up Bird Chronicle by Haruki MurakamiKafka on the Shore by Haruki MurakamiBattle Royale by Koushun TakamiHard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World by Haruki Murakami
Best Japanese Books
139th out of 444 books — 1,885 voters
Parasite Eve by Hideaki Sena
Books About Abdomens
1st out of 1 book — 2 voters

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Community Reviews

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There are two things you will learn from reading Parasite Eve

1. How to do a kidney transplant. In fact, by the time you finished reading, you will likely be able to perform one on yourself. Wouldn't recommend you try it though.

2. Everything about mitochondria. I didn't know what mitochondria was. I looked it up. The information in the novel seems very accurate in the science department, although I suspect there is a lot of speculation about the evolution of both Mitochondria and human cells. But
If you really liked the game, you will like this book regardless. If you did not like or play the game, then here are some things you should know:

There is a lot of technical writing, but I love that in something in the horror/science fiction genre. It makes it more creepy and much more believable. But if you don't like that, stay away from this novel.

There is a lot of flashback going on. The first time I read the book, I got really confused. The second rethrough was much more enjoyable because
Leo Robertson

I still kinda see this as the guide for optimum blend of hard science with fiction and suspense.

"Yes, there is a story to be told, but if I find a kidney transplant fascinating enough to describe to you in depth then I'm bloody well gonna do it!"
My god, where do I even begin with this book.

Let's start at the top with this: This book is the WORST. Worse than Caliban Cove , which has now retroactively become a two star book. This book put me to sleep at least three times, though I had hoped my Australian girlfriend didn't notice. In fact, having someone you love read it to you with a cute Aussie accent is its one saving grace, and I can't imagine that's what Hideaki Sena had in mind so I refuse to give him credit for that. So what exactly
Chris Salzman
I'm squeamish and frighten easily. Not what you'd call a horror fan.

I picked this up because back in the 90s I'd played and remembered really enjoying the Parasite Eve videogames. Somewhere on the internet I saw mention that the story in the game was based on a book that had only gotten an English translation in the past decade. Needless to say, I was intrigued. Put it on hold at my fantastic library (AADL, represent), and had it in my hands within a week.

Only after getting into it a bit did I
Julie Hayes
Mitochondria are specialized subunits of those cells which contain nuclei, or eukaryotic cells, whose basic function is to provide energy for the cells with which to do their thing, as well as in assisting with other functions, such as controlling the cell cycle, the cell growth and the cell death. The word mitochondrion comes from the Greek words for thread and granule. Mitochondrial genes are not inherited the same way as their nucleic brethren. Basically, mitochondria are matrilineal, meaning ...more
Jinny (
I became interested in this book because I had heard of the video game of the same name. I never played the video game but I had a general idea of what it was about. For those of you who, like me, have also heard of the video game, I’ll just tell you now that the game is based off of the book, but the plots are very, very different. As different as they are, the book is pretty good, in my opinion.

In Parasite Eve, a woman named Kiyomi dies in an automobile accident. Her husband, a mitochondria re
Si tuviera que calificar la pura historia tal vez si le hubiera dado cinco estrellas; sea por mi afición al género del terror ó porque simplemente me gustó (¿me aterró?) la premisa del libro.

Lo malo es que el ritmo, para mi gusto, está un poco fuera de balance. El principio es bastante lento y las descripciones médicas a veces detalladas en exceso. Por allá del 75% comienza lo interesante. Otra cosa que en lo personal me desagrada un poco es que abusen de las regresiones; está bien ir descubrie
Parasite Eve is a different kettle of fish than I'm used to reading. It is a horror novel, though pretty tame, and in my opinion more of a thriller. It starts off very slow; indeed, a key criticism of the novel would be how 70% of it is devoid of action, and centres instead on fairly technical scientific dialogue. That said, Eve eventually picks up the action, the premise is unique and fascinating, and I learned a fair bit about bio-chemistry and molecular biology just by reading this puppy. Mor ...more
Timothy Frederick

I thoroughly enjoyed reading this. I'll be checking out Hideaki Sena's other works down the line. I only played the game for a few hours a long time ago but after reading this, I feel like giving it another shot.

One thing that is common for writers is to "write what you know". Hideaki did just that. Some of the more casual readers may find the constant medical and biology jargon a bit headache-inducing but guess what? There's a glossary of sorts in the back of the book.

The pacing was excellent.
This book, though short, took me a while to get through.

I just wasn't impressed with most of it. It started somewhat slow and almost seemed weighted down with all the medical/scientific language (more than once I felt amazed that someone had translated such heightened language from Japanese). It really wasn't until the last third of the page that I "got into" the story and was pulled in.

There are multiple adaptations of this story in other mediums, I'm somewhat interested in seeing the movie but
Sena's Parasite Eve is a thrilling horror novel that won't make you jump out of your seat, but more puke out your lunch. This book, for a start, is not for those coming from the game' solo king for some answers. The games were based off this book, but feature a different ensemble of characters entirely. As such, I suggest you clear you mind of everything you know about this book before reading it.

Sena describes characters and settings beautifully and really adds a unique sense of horror that rea
[Overall, I would not recommend unless you're interesting in biological horror, or want some background for the PlayStation games]

I picked this up because I played Parasite Eve when I was younger, and thought that before I pick it up to play again on PSN, I should read the book, to which the game is considered a sequel.

Overall I think the concept is really cool, and I admire Dr. Sena for breaking new ground in fiction. I have a background in biology, though not in microbiology or cell biology. T
A wonderful book that precedes one of the greatest videogames of all time. If you love biology and sci-fi involving biology, this book is one for you. Very detailed and makes you wonder about the abilities of our bodies beyond our control.
This book... this book. How do I even begin? The first two thirds of it consist of a long, steady buildup. This includes background on the relationship between two of the lead characters, step-by-step instructions on how to transplant a kidney, a discussion of evolution, and lots and lots of scinetific jargon (Don't worry, a glossary is included).

Then, in the last hundred pages or so, the shit really hits the fan and it never slows down. The whole thing just gets rather gross and disturbing, and
Steven Shroyer
Freaky and scary, this import is one of the most terrifying books I have read this year. This is a must read!
I, like so many others, first found out about this book after having played the video game.

While this book is slow to get going, with most it's "action" taking place in the final third of the novel, it is an excellent read. The concepts involved are quite thrilling. It is hyper-technical in many places, even for someone like me that does have a solid understanding of a lot of the science involved. However, knowledge of mitochondria or cell study is not a prerequisite for enjoying this book. You
If Koji Suzuki is the Stephen King of Japan, Hideaki Sena would seem to be its Dean Koontz.
When I had read enough of this book to know that I wanted to write a review of it, I had planned on opening said review with the line: Contains one of the ickiest rape scenes I have ever read, and having read The Bighead, I've been exposed to etc etc. However, I wish to rescind that as my opening and start with this new line:

This book contains two of the ickiest rape scenes I have ever read, etc etc.

Those who assume I am being facetious for some humorous purpose are incorrect in their assumption
Nina Sankovitch
Review on Parasite Eve by Hideaki Sena is a bizarre and utterly mesmerizing book of science fiction horror. I never would have found it, much less read it, without being pointed in the right direction by a good friend with a unique taste in books. I am now pointing anyone I know in the direction: Read Parasite Eve! Long a cult favorite in Japan, the book was made into a movie and its premise — the rise of a parasitic mitochondria ready, willing, and — most scary of all — able ...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
‘Parasite Eve’ is to Kidney Transplants as ‘Moby Dick’ is to whaling.

This book was my first foray into Japanese written horror, and overall it was an interesting one. You can definitely see the differences between Western and Eastern horror within this book as the action moves along and slowly builds. The author knows his stuff, being a member of the scientific field he decided to write about, so the details within this book are above and beyond anything you would see in a standard horror novel
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
I was looking to have the shit scared out of me, not slowly bored out of me with a blunt instrument. Maybe this is just a case of going into a book with the wrong expectations and finding myself disappointed. I expected scary, I got slow-going lecture on pharmaceutical laboratory tests, kidney transplants, mitochondria that ended up with a lot of running around after a slimy monster with tentacles.

The premise sounded interesting with the idea of genetics, transplants and the make up of life. I d
Anna Janelle
Rating Clarification: 2.5

I'm SWAMPED with finals and final projects for this semester, so I'll be short and sweet - because I think I'm losing my mind.

Yay for Japanese horror; boo for this book. Perhaps I'll come back to elaborate later, but I feel that I've honestly wasted too much time on thinking about this already.

To COMPLETELY break things down in a non-scientific manner: mitochondrial cells from a doctor's dead wife mutate and try to spawn a new species that may mean the end of man kind.
A wonderful SciFi-Thriller that has been accurately described as an addictive page-turner. No surprises there since each chapter is filled with mystery and the real plot emerges out of nowhere, as if it was always there.

Even though this story is based in real-life mitochondria research (as far as what was known in the middle 90s), there are some obvious fictional permissions the author took in order to make this such a great story, he goes as far as giving conscience to an organelle, but it work
I went into this knowing the basics of what happened in the first video game. (Never played it myself, but I did read through a screenshot LP once.) So the ending was a bit of a foregone conclusion to me. Still, having some idea of how the plot was going to develop was what kept me reading, as I can't imagine continuing on until the very end if I went into this completely cold.

There are looooong sections of text that don't do much in the way of character or plot development, but instead serve to
Wow. Just no. I'm not even going to bother mentioning my affection for J-horror, because this book does not deserve it. It takes a killer premise, that our symbiotic relationship with mitochondria could also be our species' downfall, and stomps on it with all the fury of an enraged bull elephant.

Avert your eyes from the next two paragraphs if you care about spoilers.

Those mitochondria, the maternal ones y'see, have hatched a plan to enslave their host organism, but due to an error in judgment an
Hey, do you remember that Parasite Eve videogame from the 90's? Well, it was a sequel to a Novel of the same name by Hideaki Sena. It was also a movie, released direct to DVD around 2001 here in The States.

Synopsis- Toshiaki's wife dies in a car accident and she has an organ donor card for her kidneys. Her mitochondria is what caused the accident and they are also manipulating her husband, a pharmicology professor who specializes in mitochondria, into taking her liver and creating cell cultures
I'm struggling to read this novel. Too many scientific terms that burn my brain hahaha. Yeah I'm not that familiar with those terms, those it's quite hard to focus on the story. But despite the boring intro, and slow pace, from the middle to the end, the story is quite interesting (and terrifying).

After finishing the book, I somehow wanna try to play the game.. But I'm not sure, because the game can be quite a disturbing one, based on what I read on the book lol.
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“This was it. Kiyomi realized it now. This was what her heart had reacted to. Her heart thrilled to mitochondria.
But why?”
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