Devlin Scott's Reviews > Kwaidan: Ghost Stories and Strange Tales of Old Japan

Kwaidan by Lafcadio Hearn
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's review
Oct 06, 2011

it was amazing
bookshelves: my-companions
Read in August, 2011

Upon his arrival in Japan in 1890, Lafcadio Hearn found himself enamored with the culture, people, and stories of the country, and would make Japan his home until his death in 1904. His collections of stories published during this time became the most popular of Hearn's writings, and earned him veneration worldwide as not only a great translator of Japanese mythology, but as a sensational teller of strange and wonderfully macabre tales. "Kwaidan" is most commonly translated as weird or horror tales, but to assign one word to the people, places, ghosts and gods in this work, one can only use the word strange. This collection of supernatural tales includes "The Story of Mimi-Nashi-Hoichi," "Ubazakura," and "Rokuro-Kubi," and other stories translated from old Japanese texts. Hearn was made a professor of English literature in the Imperial University of Tokyo in 1895, and is today revered by the Japanese for providing significant insights into their own national character.

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I remembered some of these ghostly tales from my childhood and they are just as good today now that I'm almost grownup. It's still one of my favorites and the illustrations are brilliant.

If you enjoy the strange then you shouldn't miss this book of ghostly tales.


Devlin
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