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The Graveyard Apartment

3.21  ·  Rating details ·  1,857 ratings  ·  380 reviews
A terrifying tale of a young family who move into an apartment building next to a graveyard and the horrors that are unleashed upon them.

One of the most popular writers working in Japan today, Mariko Koike is a recognized master of detective fiction and horror writing. Known in particular for her hybrid works that blend these styles with elements of romance, Th
Hardcover, 325 pages
Published October 11th 2016 by Thomas Dunne Books (first published July 1988)
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Average rating 3.21  · 
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 ·  1,857 ratings  ·  380 reviews

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Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin
One day Teppei (father), Misao (mother), Tamao (daughter), Cookie (dog) and Pyoko (White Finch) move into an apartment by the graveyard. And that was the dumbest decision they ever made!

The story starts out slow for me, but after about 40% it takes off. There are little things in the beginning, stuff with the bird that pass and kept coming back and everyone being creeped out by the basement where the storage units were . . . and then . . . it all gets cray!

When these bizarre things start happ
Nov 25, 2018 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Sep 10, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: horror
A large, modern apartment conveniently located in metro Tokyo. It's surrounded by a graveyard, a crematorium, and a Buddhist temple-- but the price to die for.

Misao and Teppei are married and have a young daughter, but in ways their happiness, and the very legitimacy of their relationship, is marred by a tragedy involving Teppei's first wife. They buy an apartment in a brand-new luxury building, proud to finally have a space that's truly "theirs." Their new home is spacious and affor
Althea Ann
Dec 04, 2016 rated it it was ok
Early in this book, there's an aside, (I wondered if it was added by the translator) to the effect that Western people might not find it terribly scary or abnormal to live in the vicinity of a graveyard, noting that many people regard them similarly to lovely parks. This definitely describes my attitude; I would regard a home with a view looking out on a graveyard to be more desirable, not less.
Although I've visited Japan, asking people what they thought of living near cemeteries never came up
Oct 03, 2016 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley
A young family has bought an apartment in a new building that houses fourteen apartments but only has eight current tenants. The building itself overlooks a cemetery and crematorium. Upon moving in the family begins to experience a few odd occurrences starting with their pet bird dying shortly after arrival but then the young daughter claims she still sees the bird.

When shown around the building the family discovers one odd design flaw to the place, the basement only has access via the elevator
Erin Dunn
Oct 04, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: wishlist, favorites

Thank you to NetGalley for providing a free ebook copy of The Graveyard Apartment By: Mariko Koike in exchange for an honest review.

Short Review Summary:
Atmospheric, good tension, and slow building.

The first thing that drew me to The Graveyard Apartment is the cover, but the other thing that really caught my attention is that it was originally published (in 1986, the year I was born) in Japan. I enjoy Japanese horror and I feel like it's something that I haven't read/watched enough
Rebecca McNutt
The Graveyard Apartment is one of only a few Japanese horror novels I've ever read. While it's not (in my opinion) as well-written, deep or complex as Ring or Another, and its plot has definitely been done to death in various forms before, it's a slow-paced but creepy little story featuring an ordinary family pitted against something strange and sinister, providing a memorable lesson on the price people pay for seeking cheaper land on sacred grounds. The eccentric neighbours and the family drama offer a foreboding a ...more
Nancy Oakes

brief plot etc: here.

The synopsis of this novel sounded like something right up my horror-reading alley, and it had potential to become a definite spine chiller had I not felt like I was reading a twisted Japanese version of the movie Poltergeist. Not only was this book a "been there, done that" sort of thing for me, but it moved at a snail's pace -- while some weird things happened, they did so sort of piecemeal, with a lot of space in between which for me only deadened any sort of creep factor I
Oct 18, 2016 rated it liked it
Oh my gosh I was so disappointed in this one, you guys. I thought for sure this would be a home run, I mean Japanese horror, HOW CAN YOU GO WRONG. It has to be creepy, right?

Nope. Turns out it can just be stilted and kind of boring.

Conceptually it’s fine: a family moves into an apartment building erected right next to a graveyard and starts experiencing weird shit. The execution is where it’s lacking. I don’t know if it’s a style thing or a translation thing or just a bad
Apr 14, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: paranormal
Misao & teppei move into an apartment with their daughter Tamao & dog Cookie by a graveyard after Teppei's former wife commits suicide. They think they will be happy until certain unknown incidents begin to happen.

As the story progresses Teppei is warned by Mr Suji to keep out of there but he just makes a joke of it saying What's down there Monsters or something But te resident said something more sinister>

It is not
Ms. Nikki
Teppei, Misao, their daughter, Tamao, and the family pet move into a newly built apartment ready to start their lives anew.
Happiness and peace do not come easily when minor disturbances start to happen that the family cannot ignore. The graveyard located nearby has the tenants wondering if their living arrangements aren't a dream come true, but a nightmare ready to be unleashed.

The premise for this story is what motivated me to request it. I picked it up and put it down many a time and with the New Year I decided I was go
3.5 stars.

THE GRAVEYARD APARTMENT, by Mariko Koike was first written in 1986, and later translated into English. The novel takes place in Japan, where the Kano family--Teppei, Maseo, and their young daughter--move into an extremely affordable apartment that they can finally consider a "place of their own". In fact, if it weren't for the fact that it's surrounded by a cemetery and crematorium, the place would almost seem ideal. . .

This was a very atmospheric and slow-burn type of "superna
Horace Derwent
Folks, it's really a typical J-horror novel...

The origianl title means "a home/house/family from where one can see a cemetery"
I was excited when I saw this book at the library because I have a thing for stories about haunted houses. When I think of Japanese horror, I think of terrifying movies like The Ring or The Grudge. My expectations were really high going in, especially after I saw the story being described in the synopsis as a “terrifying” tale. Unfortunately, the book missed the mark on the creep factor that I was hoping for but I still ended up liking it!

The story takes place in 1987 and revolves ar
Dec 02, 2016 rated it did not like it
Saw this book on a list of "best horror novels" and gave it a try. It's possibly the translation but I could not connect to any of the characters. I think only Cookie the dog had any sort of survival instinct. I'm not one that requires every detail explained to me, especially supernatural, but it seemed like none of the exposition even mattered to the conflict or the awkward epilogue.

There was so much silliness. A basement that can only be accessed by an elevator (gee, I wonder if something bad
Jessica Woodbury
2.5 stars, rounded up. The haunted house genre has morphed with the changing times to now include entire apartment buildings. It's really fertile territory, I just wish Koike did a little more with it. The creepy factor is there (just the thought of getting stuck in a basement is horrifying) and I thought the end really delivered (rare in horror) but an important part of a good horror novel is a non-horror narrative. There needs to be a story for our characters that is not just scary thing happe ...more
Nov 09, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
Mariko Koike's The Graveyard Apartment is written in the same style as Japanese horror movie The Ring.

I picked this book up because I was looking for not only a scare but a scare from another culture. I wanted to compare a Japanese take on horror to that of North Americans. It is a different kind horror than most Americans are used to consuming. We like our horror to be fast-paced, heartbeat-skipping, and sleepless night inducing.

This book did not check the first box. It was a slow build, which may be an in
Sep 24, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: horror
I have mixed feelings on this one. A husband, wife, their young daughter, and dog Cookie (who is the only character's name I can spell or pronounce) move into a beautiful brand new apartment which overlooks a graveyard and crematorium. In fact on some days you can see the smoke of burning bodies drifting towards the windows. From the minute they move in odd things start happening. Their pet bird dies their very first night in their new home, and as if that is not enough of a bad omen, right away ...more
Rachel (TheShadesofOrange)
3.0 Stars

The book started out with a promising setup. The narrative was quite slow paced, but the premise initially kept me intrigued. Unfortunately, the story took too long to get going and never managed to create suspense or terror. For a translation, the writing was fairly clean. Overall, this was a good premise for a horror novel that failed in the execution.
Laura (midorireads)
Sep 29, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: netgalley-arcs
I had mixed feelings when it came to deciding how I wanted to rate this one...

The Graveyard Apartment: A Novel caught my eye because I love J-Horror, and the idea of a book centered around the occupants of an almost empty building, across from a graveyard??? Count me in! So here I am, assuming that that means I'll get a lot of supernatur
I would have rated this book higher if the writing was a little better. I suspect that the fault lies with the translation, though. The text read as a little dry when describing creepy scenes or even just basic moments. But what I liked about the book was:

The insight into Japanese culture, which I know little about;
The main characters had an interesting background that made them complex and the author risked making them very unsympathetic characters because of it;
The cree
May 07, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
There is an early(ish) internal rumination by our father-figure/male-protagonist, Teppei, about his admiration of some college friends that had moved into an apartment of a recently deceased woman. Rather than them being freaked out or made uneasy by this, they had even taken to eating off her plates and using her stuff to save money and to have a good time. At the time, it is staged as his comparison of the rational (there's no reason not to use the woman's stuff and take advantage of the cheap ...more
Oct 30, 2016 rated it liked it

Translated by Deborah Boliver Boehm

The nitty-gritty: An atmospheric and creepy ghost story that kept me turning the pages, but ultimately suffered from awkward writing and plotting.

I thought it would be nice to close out the month with a ghost story, especially since today is Halloween! I was initially drawn to The Graveyard Apartment because of the chilling cover art, depicting an apartment building set against a stormy sky, smack dab in the middle of a cemetery. The book was originally published in/>



Feb 14, 2017 rated it liked it
What a creepy little ghost story! Sinking into this slow-burn ghost story felt a lot like Shirley Jackson's amazing novel, The Haunting of Hill House. The writing style felt like Shirley Jackson period, maybe even a bit of We Have Always Lived in the Castle. I just loved it. The characters had a hard time leaping off the page at first, as Koike doesn't take care to really flesh them out. However, as the plot progresses and ups the creep-factor, that tiny failure becomes less noticeable. I think ...more
Dez Nemec
Jul 28, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: horror, 2019
Apparently, living near a cemetery is not as great as one would think. (Well, I think it would be great. But that might be just weird, little ol' me...)

Something weird is going on in the building where Teppei and Misao Kano have moved with their daughter, dog and bird. The apartments are very cheap, but the building is only half full, perhaps because it is surrounded by a graveyard and crematorium. Right off, the bird keels over dead in the apartment. Then Tamao, the daughter, is mys
Apr 20, 2019 rated it really liked it
Excellent creep factor.
Oct 26, 2016 rated it did not like it
I'm a big fan of manga and Japanese horror but the uneven ratings here helped me to prepare for the worst and I was rewarded for my cynicism, unfortunately.

The only horrifying aspect of The Graveyard Apartment was how not horrifying it was.

First, I didn't realize the book was published in the early 90s and was just released in the US as a paperback. That's why I couldn't understood why the events took place in the late 80s. How retro.

Secondly, the premise of the story felt very c
Aug 11, 2016 rated it really liked it
This is, I believe, the first English translation of a Japanese horror novel from the 80s. Whether it was written in a relatively timeless way, or whether the culture gap is wide enough that I just didn't notice, the book doesn't really feel dated. The only thing that immediately screamed "not set in this time" was that no one had a cell phone, so all in all - pretty dang contemporary.

As for the part where it's horror, I felt like it was my kind of horror. Koike spends a lot of time sl
Dec 02, 2016 rated it really liked it
The Graveyard Apartment by Mariko Koike

From The Book:
This tale of a young married couple who harbor a dark secret is packed with dread and terror, as they and their daughter move into a brand new apartment building built next to a graveyard. As strange and terrifying occurrences begin to pile up, people in the building start to move out one by one, until the young family is left alone with someone... or something... lurking in the basement. The psychological horror builds moment af
Regina Widya
Apr 10, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: thriller-horror
Finished reading this book today after skipping several parts. The idea of the story itself was pretty scary, however the pace of the book was slow and too many unrelated conversations and scenes. And I wasn't too happy with the quite unclear ending. I wanted a clear ending and I want to exactly know what happened with the family and I wanted to know what caused all of the horror and why. Unfortunately the book was finished before it managed to let the readers know.
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