Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “砂の女 [Suna no onna]” as Want to Read:
砂の女 [Suna no onna]
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

砂の女 [Suna no onna]

3.91  ·  Rating details ·  14,843 Ratings  ·  1,114 Reviews
This beautiful novel by one of Japan's most important writers is also one of the most strangely terrifying and memorable books you'll ever read. The Woman in the Dunes is the story of an amateur entomologist who wanders alone into a remote seaside village in pursuit of a rare beetle he wants to add to his collection. But the townspeople take him prisoner. They lower him in ...more
Paperback, 276 pages
Published February 1981 by 新潮社 (first published 1962)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about 砂の女 [Suna no onna], please sign up.

Popular Answered Questions

Ashes Xinom The book is really dark and psychologically intense. I would suggest you read this book without any expectations. Hope you enjoy it
This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-10)
Rating details
Sort: Default
|
Filter
Helen Ροζουλί Εωσφόρος   Vernus Portitor Arcanus Ταμετούρο   Αμούν Arnum
Αριστουργηματικό έργο που γίνεται ακόμη πιο συγκλονιστικό καθώς διαχέεται ολόκληρο απο ΑΡΩΜΑ ΚΑΦΚΑ & ΑΝΕΠΑΙΣΘΗΤΗ ΑΠΟΧΡΩΣΗ ΚΑΜΥ.

Σουρεαλιστικές καταστάσεις, ατομικοί ψυχαναγκασμοί, σκληρές ευαισθησίες και παγιδευμένες υπάρξεις μέσα στους προσωπικούς και κοινωνικούς εφιάλτες. Σισύφεια προσπάθεια λύτρωσης.

Το ατελέσφορο και επαναληπτικό βασανιστήριο του πρωταγωνιστή καθρεφτίζει ρεαλιστικά κομμάτια απο τη δική μας καθημερινότητα.
Κάτι που δεν αντιλαμβάνεται εύκολα ο αναγνώστης, την ταύτιση, σε υ
...more
Mary
Feb 16, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, 2013, japan
This book is horrifically claustrophobic and eerie.

How much of our lives consist of frantically trying to stay afloat? Life can be as fruitless as a man trapped under sand dunes digging to live...or living to dig. Do we work to live or live to work? If you think being held hostage in sand is fantastical, what do you think your life is, anyway?

This book wears you down. It gets into your skin, your hair, under your fingernails. The sand is everywhere. The wind, the salt air, their eyes always wat
...more
Ahmad Sharabiani
Suna no onna = sand woman = The woman in the dunes, Kōbō Abe
The Woman in the Dunes (Suna no onna "sand woman") is a novel by the Japanese writer Kōbō Abe, published in 1962. It won the 1962 Yomiuri Prize for literature, and an English translation and a film adaptation appeared in 1964.
In 1955, Jumpei Niki, a schoolteacher from Tokyo, visits a fishing village to collect insects. After missing the last bus, he is led, by the villagers, in an act of apparent hospitality, to a house in the dunes tha
...more
Agnieszka
Aug 23, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own, japan, 2014, reviewed

When we mix surrealistic Kafkaesque climate with existential questions about sense of human being then we get something like The woman in the dunes .

Tale about a man obsessed or maybe possessed with sand who during the trip to the sea is trapped in the dunes in a cave inhabited by a lonely woman. Initially desperately tries to escape, but the magnetic strength of the woman, her desperate fight with sand makes that what previously seemed to be a trap now becomes a sense of his life.

The first wh
...more
Nicole~
Apr 09, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
4.5 stars

Without the threat of punishment there is no joy in flight.


In Kobo Abe's fantasy world of The Woman in the Dunes, an amateur entomologist on vacation finds himself in a remote coastal village built amid deeply undulating dunes. There, he is tricked by a lonely widow and her neighboring villagers, trapped in deep pits shored by sand drift walls, to be charged with the task of shoveling back the ever-sliding banks, persistent and never-ending in its threat to entomb them.

Sand moves aroun
...more
Saleh MoonWalker
Onvan : The Woman in the Dunes - Nevisande : K�Ťb�Ť Abe - ISBN : 679733787 - ISBN13 : 9780679733782 - Dar 256 Safhe - Saal e Chap : 1962
Rowena
Apr 05, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: japanese-lit
“While he mused on the effect of the flowing sands, he was seized from time to time by hallucinations in which he himself began to move with the flow.”

This book is about a man who tricked and has to live in a house at the bottom of a sand pit with a woman. They can't escape the sand which settles on them even as they sleep. As much as they shovel it away, they can't get rid of it.

This is definitely a unique story. I now know more about sand than I probably need to. I never really thought much a
...more
Praj
Mar 20, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: にほん
While reading this book my thoughts were constantly racing towards Camus’s ‘The Myth of Sisyphus” "From the moment absurdity is recognized, it becomes a passion, the most harrowing of all."

Premises of hope, alienation and irrationality reeking from every printed word induced me into inferring Kobo Abe being the Japanese Camus. The protagonist Junpei Niki illustrates traits of Sisyphean persona; pursuing meaningless task of digging buckets of sand from the pit only to see it fill up again.

Junpe
...more
David
Jan 23, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Sand women, entomologists
Since I started reading both more avidly and more widely several years ago, I've spent more time analyzing different genres, different kinds of authors, and different kinds of literature. In Jane Smiley's 13 Ways of Looking at the Novel, she makes a number of observations about how classic French novels differ from classic British novels, and how American novelists differ from either. I'm not well read enough in French and British literature to judge the validity of her points, other than to not ...more
Cheryl
Oct 24, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Cheryl by: David
Shelves: fiction, japan
What happens if while on vacation, you disappear? Who would miss you, take out newspaper ads for you, hang missing-person flyers on poles for you, call the cops for you?

High in the night sky there was a continuous, discordant sound of wind blowing at a different velocity. And on the ground the wind was a knife continually shaving off thin layers of sand, as a village of sand lost all hope. The village's only resourcefulness has now become enslavement. Poor entomologist, a man who finds pleasure
...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Japanese Literature: Woman in the Dunes Chapter 10 to the end 5 31 Jul 31, 2015 03:11PM  
Japanese Literature: Woman in the Dunes 10-20 1 23 Jul 12, 2015 06:19AM  
Japanese Literature: Woman in the Dunes Part 1 Chapters 1-10 1 26 Jul 09, 2015 06:23AM  
Japanese Literature: The Woman In the Dunes Chapters 1-5 5 26 Jul 08, 2015 10:17AM  
The World's Liter...: Part II (ch 11-27) 16 41 Jun 26, 2015 05:23PM  
The World's Liter...: Part I (ch 1-10) 15 70 Apr 28, 2015 08:28PM  
  • Some Prefer Nettles
  • Fires on the Plain
  • Rashomon and Other Stories
  • The Waiting Years
  • The Three-Cornered World
  • The Setting Sun
  • Shipwrecks
  • Teach Us to Outgrow Our Madness: Four Short Novels
  • The Lake
  • Runaway Horses
  • The Wild Geese
  • A Dark Night's Passing (Japan's Modern Writers)
  • The Oxford Book of Japanese Short Stories
6526
Kōbō Abe (安部 公房 Abe Kōbō), pseudonym of Kimifusa Abe, was a Japanese writer, playwright, photographer and inventor.

He was the son of a doctor and studied medicine at Tokyo University. He never practised however, giving it up to join a literary group that aimed to apply surrealist techniques to Marxist ideology.

Abe has been often compared to Franz Kafka and Alberto Moravia for his surreal, often n
...more
More about Kōbō Abe...
“Loneliness was an unsatisfied thirst for illusion.” 117 likes
“Do you shovel to survive, or survive to shovel?” 66 likes
More quotes…