8 best books by Japanese writers

Review of the best according to the editorial board. On the selection criteria. This material is subjective and does not constitute advertising and does not serve as a purchase guide. Before buying, you need to consult with a specialist.

Most of us associate Japan with cherry blossoms, samurai and geisha. However, the culture of this country is much richer. Cinematography, music and visual arts are actively developing here. We invite you to look into the world of the mysterious Japanese soul and get acquainted with the best books by Asian writers who are known all over the world.

Ranking of the best books by Japanese writers

Nomination a place Name of product rating
Ranking of the best books by Japanese writers 1 Kobo abe. Woman in the Sands 5.0
2 Yukio Mishima. Golden temple 4.9
3 Haruki Murakami. Kafka on the beach 4.8
4 Ishihara Shintaro. Salt of life 4.7
5 Banana Yoshimoto. Kitchen 4.6
6 Yasutaka Tsutsui. Paprika. 4.5
7 Natsuo Kirino. Tender cheeks 4.4
8 Junichiro Tanizaki 'Snowy Landscape' 4.3

Kobo abe. Woman in the Sands

Rating: 5.0

Kobo abe.  Woman in the Sands

The rating opens with a dramatic story about a scientist who was looking for a rare species of insect and ended up in a suspicious village. Every night this place is covered with sands. The struggle of local residents with them is pointless, because small grains will one day completely cover houses and destroy everything. The main character is trying to find a way out and save the people living here.

The novel “Woman in the Sands” is definitely recommended for reading by students of philological faculties. This is not entertainment literature, but a serious atmospheric work that will give strong emotions, push you to comprehend life.

Yukio Mishima. Golden temple

Rating: 4.9

Yukio Mishima.  Golden temple

The second place was taken by the book, the author of which became three times Nobel Prize nominee. The Golden Temple is the most widely read novel in Japan. Its plot is a real event that happened to a Buddhist monk who burned down the Kinkaku-ji temple during a fit of insanity. Yukio Mishima was shocked by this story and wrote a masterpiece, adding new meaning to it.

Judging by the reviews, the work is quite difficult to read. A special place is given here to Buddhist philosophy. The work contains many historical facts and descriptions of military operations. Most likely, it will not be easy for an ordinary Christian to understand the whole point of the plot. The book is more suitable for those who are fond of Asian culture and Buddhism.

Haruki Murakami. Kafka on the beach

Rating: 4.8

Haruki Murakami.  Kafka on the beach

It turns out that Haruki Murakami has a huge number of fans among Russian readers of all ages. The book 'Kafka on the Beach' is another portion of the author's inherent fantasies. This is a voluminous novel that touches on the theme of the connection between the individual, his past and future. It is full of details, long dialogues.

The plot 'sways' slowly. There are some very interesting thoughts in the book, 'tasty' scenes, piquant notes and hard thoughts. The story is clearly drawn out. It will appeal to those who like to reason, draw conclusions and discover the secrets of the modern world.

Ishihara Shintaro. Salt of life

Rating: 4.7

Ishihara Shintaro.  Salt of life

The author of the book 'The Salt of Life' devoted his life not only to writing books, but also to politics. His work is a collection of stories written in the first person. This is an atypical Japanese story about the incessant movement of a hero who crosses the seas, hunts under water and drives at breakneck speed in a car …

The book reminded the readers of stories at gatherings with friends. There are no deep truths here. The text is written in a laconic and lively language. After reading, only pleasant impressions remain. Interesting adventure stories will help you relax at home, introduce you to the work of an outstanding author and politician, who is especially popular in the east. It is noteworthy that from 1999 to 2012 Shintaro Ishihara served as governor of Tokyo. He is known for his anti-American views and the creation of the Japan Revival Party.

Banana Yoshimoto. Kitchen

Rating: 4.6

Banana Yoshimoto.  Kitchen

Next in the ranking is the book by the Japanese writer Banana Yoshimoto. Her main character of all the rooms of her house loves the kitchen the most. Here she is comfortable and calm. This is, perhaps, all that connects the plot with the title of the work. The text itself tells about the loneliness of a woman who is trying to share it with someone.

Despite some absurdity of the plot, the book is recommended for reading, since it will be of interest to many modern readers. Someone recognizes themselves in heroes. Of the minuses, unexpected expressions are noted in a rude form, sharp time jumps between events.

Yasutaka Tsutsui. Paprika.

Rating: 4.5

Yasutaka Tsutsui.  Paprika.

The next book is written by a novelist and playwright, who is included in the list of the best science fiction writers and is known to Russian readers for the film adaptations of his books. The anime tells about a girl psychiatrist named Paprika. She lives at a time when scientists have learned to treat the disorders of patients through dreams. The therapy device falls into the wrong hands and becomes a merciless weapon. Paprika should save humanity from the threat.

The work will appeal to fans of the author, but for those who are not yet familiar with the work of the Japanese writer, the book may seem unrealistic, incomprehensible and boring. In any case, she deserves to be in the ranking of the best.

Natsuo Kirino. Tender cheeks

Rating: 4.4

Natsuo Kirino.  Tender cheeks

The heroes of the book 'Tender Cheeks' are two married couples with children who decide to spend the weekend at the dacha. There a tragedy occurs – one of the parents has a five-year-old daughter disappearing. The investigation drags on for years. The story is supplemented with a psychological component. According to the recollections of the mother of the missing, she is to learn about the mysterious past of the family.

Readers loved the detail and tragedy of the novel. In the course of the narration, the Japanese writer puts forward several versions of the development of events, and in the finale puts everything in its place. As a result, there remains a slight understatement, suggesting that you think out the ending yourself. This book will appeal to those who prefer drawn-out plots, a lot of thoughts and reflections of the characters.

Junichiro Tanizaki 'Snowy Landscape'

Rating: 4.3

Junichiro Tanizaki 'Snowy Landscape'

The rating is completed by the work of a talented Japanese writer who was engaged not only in literature, but also in cinematography. His passion for European styles was widely reflected in his work. Tanizaki skillfully created original subjects and unique images. Once the author plunged into the study of the history of his homeland. After that, the novel 'Snowy Landscape' appeared. It describes the events of the 30-40s of the 20th century. In the story, parents want to marry 4 sisters and carefully select suitors for them.

Readers are immersed in Japanese culture and delight in detailed descriptions of the little things of everyday life. The work is notable for its unhurried narration, the author carefully 'chews' every event. Conversely, descriptions of important and key points have been omitted. The novel is recommended for those who love a leisurely plot development and want to learn more about Japanese culture.


Attention! This rating is subjective and does not constitute an advertisement and does not serve as a purchase guide. Before buying, you need to consult with a specialist.

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