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Author - Will Harris

book and bed tokyo

Japan’s Best Book Hostels: Book and Bed

Why stay there? Books, travelling, and sleeping are my three favourite things. And Japan is my favourite country. So when we discovered that there exists in Tokyo a beautiful hostel with bunks tucked between the bookshelves, a book on every pillow, and walls plastered with vintage newspapers, I lost my mind a little bit. Book And Bed is a perfect hostel experience...

The Accusation: Bandi’s Forbidden Truth About North Korea

Translated by: Deborah Smith A Book of Such Importance It is difficult to know where to start when discussing a book like this. Smuggled one by one out of North Korea and into China as scribbled manuscripts, and here collected at last as a gorgeous hardcopy. Bandi’s collection of short stories, The Accusation, is not just a valuable insight into ordinary (read:...

How Jung Chang’s Wild Swans Made Me A Better Laowai

Before I lived in Tokyo and Seoul, I lived in Shanghai. Expats and locals alike in Tokyo and Seoul have joked with me more than once about the harshness of Chinese culture and the unpleasantness of life there; jokes such as: ‘On the Seoul subway, keep your voice down. You don’t want to be a Chinese tourist!’ and ‘I know I could save more money living in China, but...

Finding Home Comforts in Shanghai – An Expat Guide

We move away from home for any number of reasons. Some of us want to learn about a different culture or try a new cuisine or language. Many of us have to work. But for all of the new, there’s always at least some old, some home comforts, that we often crave. These are different for everyone, but here I’ve compiled a list of home comforts that can be found in Shanghai...

Banana Yoshimoto’s Kitchen: In Love and in Death

Banana Yoshimoto Translated by Megan Backus Every great novelist has pinned a theme to a punching bag and attempted to tackle it. And every theme has been tackled numerous times. ‘The lengths we go to for love’ as a theme, for example, has been thoroughly exhausted; this dead horse has been beaten black and blue by Mary Shelley, Emily Bronte, William Shakespeare, and...

The White Book: Where Empty Space Comes Alive

  Calling it The White Book feels reductive, almost wrong on purpose. Because The White Book is less a book and more an embracing feeling of familiarity. This book is something you live and feel, and all of this is created by its use of empty space. Han Kang has created a story unlike any I’ve read, but beyond being a story it is very much an exploration of the...

The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle: Finding Yourself in Toru

Haruki Murakami Translated by: Jay Rubin “I leaned my head against the wall and closed my eyes. May Kasahara was probably right. This person, this self, this me, was made somewhere else. Everything had come from somewhere else, and it would all go somewhere else. I was nothing but a pathway for the person known as me Even I know that much, Mr Wind-up Bird. How come...

The Hole: Korean Horror at its Most Unsettling

Written by Pyun Hye Young, translated by Sora Kim-Russell. Blurbs are a tricky thing to get right. We shouldn’t have to stomach blurbs which give too much away. Sometimes having no blurb at all can serve a book very well. The blurb for the translated edition of The Hole is, thankfully, vague. It cites two comparisons: Alfred Hitchcock and Stephen King, both of...