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Journey Under the Midnight Sun

4.31  ·  Rating details ·  6,588 ratings  ·  912 reviews
When a man is found murdered in an abandoned building in Osaka in 1973, unflappable detective Sasagaki is assigned to the case. He begins to piece together the connection of two young people who are inextricably linked to the crime; the dark, taciturn son of the victim and the unexpectedly captivating daughter of the main suspect. Over the next twenty years we follow their ...more
Paperback, 539 pages
Published October 8th 2015 by Little, Brown (first published August 1999)
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This question contains spoilers… (view spoiler)
Alex Perez Imaeda's belief that Yukiho liked Kazunari was just his theory, because he had no idea about who Ryo was. He just had "one side" of the story. It…moreImaeda's belief that Yukiho liked Kazunari was just his theory, because he had no idea about who Ryo was. He just had "one side" of the story. It isn't explicitly stated (ever), but it is assumed the only person she trusts in the world is Ryo (and vice versa).
For your second question, I think you mean Namie (and not Natsumi), the "accountant" for the gaming company. It has to be Ryo that sold her out. He was the only one who knew he would be there at the Nagoya hotel.(less)

Community Reviews

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4.31  · 
Rating details
 ·  6,588 ratings  ·  912 reviews

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Bowei Zhang
Apr 14, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: detective
Pardon me, but I don't think those who only commented on the story catch the essence of this masterpiece.

The most amazing part of this book is not the plot itself! Instead, try concentrating on the details that Higashino-sensei gave you (e.g., what kind of books did the officer saw when he entered the boy's room for the first time at the beginning of the fiction?) and you would be able to solve many quizzes that were not revealed by the author...

This interaction between storyteller and readers
“You know how the sun rises and sets at a certain time each day? In the same way, all of our lives have a day and night. But it’s not set like it is with the sun. Some people walk forever in the sunlight, and some people have to walk through the darkest night their whole lives. When people talk about being afraid, what they’re afraid of is that their sun will set. That the light they love will fade.”

‘Journey under the midnight sun’ begins with the murder of a pawnbroker in an abandoned buildin
Apr 10, 2016 rated it really liked it
Recommended to Jokoloyo by: shanghao
I can understand if someone rate this book 5-star. The voice of this book unique, especially if the reader has not read any Keigo Higashino's work before. The plot itself is more to crime thriller than to mystery.

The easiest to notice of this book is the POVs. The POVs of this book mostly from minor characters. I find this a little bit boring, because it makes the story slow (for every POV, there is a background story). But, the author uses the background story blending with the setting setup.

Riju Ganguly
Jan 29, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Books written by Keigo Higashino leave most of the readers pretty speechless with their clever twists & turns, adroit characterization, and the depth of emotions that lace the actions on part of all concerned. The book under review is, even by his standards, a masterpiece, that has literally left me stunned. I am actually finding it difficult to write a review of it, but still, one has to try.

A pawnbroker named Yosuke Kirihara was found murdered in an abandoned bulding. The body had been fou
Sep 17, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: crime-mystery, japan
Higashino Keigo is, hands-down, one of the best Japanese crime writers I've read.

This book is long - longer than most crime fiction ought to be -- and so the first half was a bit diffuse, as the many relevant strands were being woven. Also, remembering all the Japanese names caused some confusion/difficult (for my aged brain) -- but, O! worth the wait...!
Oct 17, 2015 rated it really liked it
Keigo Higashino is a master of this genre. He has rewritten everything I ever thought a thriller should be. This is no exception. The tiny details and how they all come together is perhaps the best part about this book. And the fact that no one is ever good or bad here. We are all capable of embracing darkness and this is something Higashino explores time and again. This novel is not for those looking for a resolution. This is not that kind of a story. It burns slow, a midnight sun.
Dec 09, 2016 rated it really liked it

We all know how sun rises and sets at a certain time each day. In the same way, all of our lives have a day and night. But it’s not set like it is with the sun. Some people walk forever in the sunlight, and some people have to walk through the darkest night their whole life. When people talk about being afraid, what they’re afraid of is that their sun will set. That the light they love will fade, that’s why they are frightened.

I was so fascinated by Keigo Higashino when I read Devotion of Sus
Jan 01, 2016 rated it did not like it
As a mystery: the story drags on for too long, introducing more and more subplots that ultimately did very little to advance the main plot. The author makes the reveal of the motive and 'trick' of each subplot self-evident to the extent that by the time the ultimate reveal comes, the reader is no longer interested. The ultimate reveal of the overall motive and 'trick' does little to justify the long setup, and the resolution is lacking in the way of consequences to the characters involved.

As a d
Aug 08, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone interested in Japanese crime fiction
The disturbing vibe that permeates this book draws on more than the damaged pair of characters tracked over the span of twenty years. It draws power from the gutters of Japanese society that fall under Higashino's impassive gaze. That sense of anomie is captured in the cover art, a photo of individuals on a busy urban sidewalk. The shot captures these people from behind. They are faceless vanishing shadows.

Higashino's initial setting is Osaka — the parts invisible to tourists but with which he
This review and this review pretty much sums up what I think about this novel.
Apr 17, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I read this 550-page tome in roughly 48 hours, foregoing sleeping and eating, and ending up dozing at work the next day.

It was all worth it, many times over.

It's a masterpiece, an effortless epic that grabs you by the collar and doesn't let go till you've finished the very last page.
Jan 02, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2018
I'm actually confused what to say about this novel. It is weird, disturbing but at the same time intriguing and definitely something which you won't put down too easily.
I already got some glimpses into the Japanese way of life thanks to reading 'Salvation of a Saint' & 'Devotion of Suspect X' by the same author but this one provides an even more in depth knowledge about their weird sense of love, humour, friendship and almost everything else. I know this is a pure work of fiction but it's s
Mithun Prasad
Oct 05, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: in-my-library
To me Kiego Higashino is a like a fast food restaurateur, who serves clean and simple food, with no fancy cutleries, no assorted mix of garnished colored vegetables, no needless eating etiquette to follow. But what draws towards him recurrently when there is new plat du jour by this chef, is the irresistible and uncompromising taste of the dish served before and blind trust on the dish to be served. In the end that’s what matter, at least to me.

Writing being very plain and simple bereft of the g
Feb 25, 2016 rated it it was ok
Yosuke Kirihara's dead body is found in an abandoned building, and Detective Sasagaki is unable to solve the case. Never one to give up, this novel traces the lives of the two main suspects over 18 years, with Sasagaki ever hovering in background.

To sum it up in one sentence, this is an infuriating and yet absorbing novel. One of the main flaws of this novel is that it is extremely hard to keep track of the characters mentioned. Higashino has the annoying tendency of introducing a seemingly end
DONE! It should count as 3 books.

Lots of specific detail for Tokyo and Osaka and at freckle count description and detail too for dozens upon dozens of supporting characters.

Our detective continues seeking information about a 19 year old cold case and subsequent events of "afterwards" that relate strongly to it.

This is a difficult, difficult book to read in English. I can only compare it to a Stephen King equivalence for the exact minutia of trend, fad, present moment tidbits of "now" and not at
Nov 01, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: crime
It's the third time I read Keigo's books. It doesn't fail to leave me feel sad and hollowed (again). I'm grieved, chilled and awed. If I was willing to stay up late for two nights in a row, from evening until past midnight and last night (or morning considering it was 1 am and I stopped because the electricity was suddenly out. Now my head aches terribly), saying #journeyunderthemidnightsun is great is an understatement. Unexpectedly this huge book has pulled me out from the reading slump.
Brilliant! Sheer brilliant.. Masterpiece!
I have never been so obsessed with detective thriller novel like this (even though, Agatha Christie is my all time favorite). The plot made me so curious!..
1. An unsolved 20 year old murder.
2. A journey with the Victim’s son and Suspect’s daughter’s incidents & murders throughout the novel, from age 10 to 25-30.
And when I reached the climax (last 50 pages), I almost guessed the murderer. But the motive behind the murder gave me some kind of vibration
A clever book. Written like a serial, each chapter adds time, complexity, characters and depth to the story. The first chapter is quite slow, but the book picks up speed as the history and connections between Ryo and Yukiho is revealed and the old policeman Sasagaki attempts to obtain closure.
There is also subtlety in what the author reveals and the choice of information given to the reader.
There is also a sub-history of 20 years of Japan from the 1960s, baseball, pop culture and the early days
3.5 stars, because, while well done, this was just a bit too long and baggy.

Oct 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crime
Keigo Higashino is an acclaimed mystery novelist from Japan, and one of my favourite authors. He started writing novels in the 80's and was popular in Japan for quite some time. But the world came to know about him when his crime thriller, Yōgisha X no Kenshin, was translated to English as Devotion of Suspect X. He writes perfect crimes which are, indeed, page-turners.

Journey Under the Midnight Sun takes us through a time span of two decades. A murder is committed, and the specifics of it remain
Apr 28, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
A gruesome murder of a pawnbroker, a dogged detective kick off this sprawling mystery that spans nearly twenty years and the lives of a whole cast of characters. This turns out to be more than a police procedural. Through various complicated subplots and unexpected twists, the author has given us a fascinating work. Various other murders occur throughout the work. It was interesting to see how the author drew everything together. I kept reading to see motivation. I was completely confused for ab ...more
E. H. Nathasia
Mar 04, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It's effing mind-blowing. His books has always been good, but this one takes psychological killer to a new level. Somehow I couldn't give it a 5, but its a 4.5 from me. When I finish reading (which is like a minute ago), its like Fuckkkkkk (sorry for the x-rated word but I couldn't find any to better express what I am feeling now). Don't expect a happy ending; well, it depends on your perspective of the ending. Personally, I hate how it ends. But I guess, that's better in a long run for it to be ...more
Oct 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
In Osaka in the early 1970s, a pawnbroker is found savagely murdered in an abandoned building. The crime fascinates Detective Sasagaki, but when, over the next year, the two major suspects die -- one in a traffic accident, the other in what everyone thinks is suicide although murder and misadventure are both possibilities too -- the investigation is wound down. Still, Sasagaki can't get the case out of his mind. He's haunted by his recollections of the two children involved: Ryo, son of the murd ...more
Jul 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: japan, 2019-read-in
4.5 stars rounded up (compared with the Japanese edition which was a solid 5 stars).
There were 3-4 short scenes in this translation which seemed conspicuously crasser, cruder than what I remember of the Japanese novel, which I read 4-5 years ago.
I can't tell whether to attribute the difference to my faulty memory or to the English translation--that is, the artistic choices of the translation combined with the inherently more explicit nature of the English language. Most of the dialogue employed
Jan 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: japan
"Journey under the midnight sun" is undoubtedly Keigo Higashino's masterpiece. It is a far superior literary work than any of the POP detective fiction that he is known for. This novel traces the life of a boy and a girl over a span of 20 years, and the quest of one detective to link them to a series of unsolvable crimes. The structure of the novel and how it alternates between the characters is similar to Murakami's 1Q84 without the surreal elements. Although I am a huge Murakami fan, I enjoyed ...more
Heather Fineisen
Sep 25, 2016 rated it it was amazing
One of the best books I've read in 2016. a multi layered mystery that keeps you guessing until the end. Not what I expected at all and now I can't wait to read more from this author.

Copy provided by Net Galley
Sallie Dunn
Jun 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wow, wow, wow! Loved this police procedural/thriller. A rather large cast of characters and it sometimes got a bit confusing, mostly doe tot he Japanese names that were challenging for me to keep straight. But twists and turns aplenty to keep you wondering how far can one man and one woman go to avenge the past. Very satisfying. Sort of long for crime fiction, but worth it. I would read this author again
Benozir Ahmed
Feb 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
My rating: 4.85

I badly needed something to keep me engrossed and away. I would say this book accomplished that with flying colors. Though I have my own grievance. The writer could have written the unwinding session of the mysteries in more details. I would not mind knowing more about the master plans of Ryo and Yukiho even if it would be a repitition of sort.(come on, Dan Brown does that! And thereby kills the thrill with a very deft hand of detail explanation (Oh, right. You’re not dan brown. B
Sep 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
So amazingly written and structured well. The idea was great, the crimes and story telling were told nicely in each chapters though a bit complex but the nervousness really intrigued. I was amazed on how the author plotting each chapters with its own narrative and crime, but in the end it was all related. From a mysterious and unsolved death to missing people, friendship and most of it-- family. The plot fast forward to certain years ahead with lots of new characters and I thought I would get lo ...more
A tad disappointing as I had come to expect more from Higashino.
Not sure where the fault is - the original writing, the translation, or the formatting of the book. [Formatting leaves lots to be desired. The events and timeline is merged into one continuum. I am not sure whether the girl I am reading about is still 11 or whether 6 years have passed in the gap between two sentences. Suddenly one line ends, and the next one in the same paragraph starts at another place/time.
Picking out the story fr
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Keigo Higashino (東野 圭吾) is one of the most popular and biggest selling fiction authors in Japan—as well known as James Patterson, Dean Koontz or Tom Clancy are in the USA.

Born in Osaka, he started writing novels while still working as an engineer at Nippon Denso Co. (presently DENSO). He won the Edogawa Rampo Prize, which is awarded annually to the finest mystery work, in 1985 for the novel Hōkago
“When you wander in the dark too long, you start to see things that aren’t really there.” 15 likes
“I would propose that every woman has a little darkness under the surface,” 14 likes
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