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Review: Junji Ito’s Frankenstein

Delve into the terrifying world of Junji Ito with this adaptation of the classic novel Frankenstein. When it comes to adaptation, book-lovers often feel divided. Some welcome film adaptations; others don’t see the point. Some spend hours debating which is better. I am of the opinion that a book and a film are too far …

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Review: The Underground Village by Kang Kyeong-ae

Even if The Underground Village were to be underwhelming, it is worth attention for being perhaps the only collection of stories to come out of Japanese-occupied Manchuria (written by a lower-class female Korean communist born in what is now North Korea) that you’ll ever read. Fortunately, thanks in no small part to some witty and …

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Review: The Lonesome Bodybuilder (Picnic in the Storm)

Two months ago I had already decided on my favourite novel, and novelist, of 2018: Convenience Store Woman and its author Sayaka Murata. I loved this book for its daring to go against the norm, something that is often far more punk rock here in Japan than it is in the West. But as we …

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The Keshiki Series: New Voices from Japan (Part 2)

Here is the second of two articles summarising and reviewing the stories found in the Keshiki series, brought to you by Strangers Press. Click here if you missed part one. What is the Keshiki Series? Eight chapbooks, each containing a tale (or tales) of around thirty or forty pages, all by Japanese authors of varying …

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The Keshiki Series: New Voices from Japan (Part 1)

Eight chapbooks, each containing a tale (or tales) of around thirty or forty pages, all by Japanese authors of varying successes that you may not have heard of. If you have, here is more of what you already love. If you have not, these books are a wonderful treat indeed: a glimpse into the styles, …

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Review: Killing Commendatore by Haruki Murakami

Most established authors become known for their tropes, be they genre, theme, character type, or writing style. For Murakami, his tropes are his events. Read enough of his works (whilst listening to a few old jazz records) and the lines between them start to blur. You may come to ask yourself, which flashback to pre-war …

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Review: All You Can Ever Know by Nicole Chung

Writing a memoir is, I imagine, the most daunting kind of writing we could dare ourselves to undertake. Opening your heart and your memories to countless faceless readers, to have them judge your life with complete freedom, leaves me with enough imagined anxiety just to consider it. And this is only half the fear. The …

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Exploring Japan’s 3 Nobel Prize Winners (Literature)

In 2017 the Nobel Prize for Literature was won by the illustrious Kazuo Ishiguro, and though he is a British citizen and writes exclusively in English, he is of Japanese birth and his first two books were set in the land he first called home. Ishiguro is my favourite author, and his win had me …

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Review: Why you Should Read Slum Wolf by Tadao Tsuge

Written by Tadao Tsuge | Translated by Ryan Holmberg In the wake of the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Japan suffered change after change; reeling from its losses, struggling to deal with its shame, fighting to rebuild its economy and its strength. This was a truly dark time for a nation that had lost its …

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