Asian literature / Japanese literature

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The Guest Cat

by Takashi Hiraide & Eric Selland

A wonderful sui generis novel about a visiting cat who brings joy into a couple’s life in Tokyo

A bestseller in France and winner of Japan’s Kiyama Shohei Literary Award, The Guest Cat, by the acclaimed...


Schoolgirl

by Osamu DAZAI

The novella that first propelled Dazai into the literary elite of post-war Japan. Essentially the start of Dazai's career, Schoolgirl gained notoriety for its ironic and inventive use of language. Now it illuminates...


Evil and the Mask

by Fuminori Nakamura

The second book by prize-winning Japanese novelist Fuminori Nakamura to be available in English translation, a follow-up to 2012's critically acclaimed The Thief─another fantastically creepy, electric literary...


The Decay of the Angel

The Sea of Fertility #4

by Yukio Mishima & Edward G. Seidensticker

Yukio Mishima’s The Decay of the Angel is the final novel in his masterful tetralogy, The Sea of Fertility. It is the last installment of Shigekuni Honda’s pursuit of the successive reincarnations of his...


The Temple of Dawn

The Sea of Fertility #3

by Yukio Mishima

Yukio Mishima’s The Temple of Dawn is the third novel in his masterful tetralogy, The Sea of Fertility. Here, Shigekuni Honda continues his pursuit of the successive reincarnations of Kiyoaki Matsugae, his...


Spring Snow

The Sea of Fertility #1

by Yukio Mishima

Yukio Mishima’s Spring Snow is the first novel in his masterful tetralogy, The Sea of Fertility. Here we meet Shigekuni Honda, who narrates this epic tale of what he believes are the successive reincarnations...


Runaway Horses

The Sea of Fertility #2

by Yukio Mishima

Yukio Mishima’s Runaway Horses is the second novel in his masterful tetralogy, The Sea of Fertility. Again we encounter Shigekuni Honda, who narrates this epic tale of what he believes are the successive reincarnations...


Another, Vol. 1 (novel)

by Yukito Ayatsuji

In the spring of 1998, Kouichi Sakakibara transfers to Yomiyama North Middle School. In class, he develops a sense of unease as he notices that the people around him act like they're walking on eggshells, and...


A Thousand Cranes

by Yasunari Kawabata

With a restraint that barely conceals the ferocity of his characters' passions, one of Japan's great postwar novelists tells the luminous story of Kikuji and the tea party he attends with Mrs. Ota, the rival...


Thousand Cranes

by Yasunari Kawabata

Nobel Prize winner Yasunari Kawabata’s Thousand Cranes is a luminous story of desire, regret, and the almost sensual nostalgia that binds the living to the dead.

 

While attending a traditional tea ceremony...


Snow Country

by Yasunari Kawabata & Edward G. Seidensticker

Nobel Prize winner Yasunari Kawabata’s Snow Country is widely considered to be the writer’s masterpiece: a powerful tale of wasted love set amid the desolate beauty of western Japan.

 

At an isolated mountain...


The Master of Go

by Yasunari Kawabata

Go is a game of strategy in which two players attempt to surround each other’s black or white stones. Simple in its fundamentals, infinitely complex in its execution, Go is an essential expression of the Japanese...


Paprika: A Novel

by Yasutaka Tsutsui

Widely acknowledged as Yasutaka Tsutsui's masterpiece, Paprika unites his surreal, quirky imagination with a mind-bending narrative about a psychiatric institute that has developed the technology to invade people's...


Revenge

by Yoko Ogawa & Stephen Snyder

“It's not just Murakami but also the shadow of Borges that hovers over this mesmerizing book… [and] one may detect a slight bow to the American macabre of E.A. Poe. Ogawa stands on the shoulders of giants,...


Kiku's Prayer: A Novel

by Shusaku Endo & Van C. Gessel

Endo Shusaku was a renowned twentieth-century Japanese author who wrote from the unusual perspective of being both Japanese and Catholic. His work is often compared to that of Graham Greene, who himself considered...


The Bridegroom Was a Dog

by Yoko Tawada & Margaret Mitsutani

Internationally acclaimed author Yoko Tawada's most famous — and bizarre — tale in a stand-alone, New Directions Pearl edition.

The Bridegroom Was a Dog is perhaps the Japanese-German writer Yoko Tawada’s...


The Tale of the Heike

by Royall Tyler

A masterpiece of world literature; the samurai saga of pride, romance, and warfare of medieval Japan

With a reflection on the fleeting nature of power and glory begins The Tale of the Heike, an epic from twelfth-century...


Building Waves

by Taeko Tomioka & Louise Heal Kawai

In her early forties, Kyoko has no compunction about getting what she wants. But when she begins a relationship with a traditional and conformist man, the result in Building Waves is uncomfortable, comical,...


Flowers of Grass

by Takehiko Fukunaga & Royall Tyler

Flowers of Grass is Takehiko Fukunaga's fully realized portrait of a young man of fastidious intelligence and great sorrow, and shows us how it is possible, seeing reality from the side of death and despair,...


The Briefcase

by Hiromi Kawakami & Allison Powell

Tsukiko, thirty-eight, works in an office and lives alone. One night, she happens to meet one of her former high school teachers, “Sensei” in a local bar. Tsukiko had only ever called him “Sensei” (“Teacher”)....