Understated yet powerfully effective.... Maryua's restrained prose mirrors the constriction of Hamada's thoughts and experience, while his amazing attention to detail renders an unquestionably real world for the narrative to exist within.
(Christine Thomas San Francisco Chronicle
Many artists have either idealized pre-surrender Japan as a golden age untainted by Westernization or criticized the blind acceptance of military objectives, but Maruya refuses to gloss over the former or treat the latter as more enlightened.
Virtuosic... a cornucopia of delights... Keene's translation dexterously reflects Maruya's linguistic exuberance.
(The New Yorker
A masterly realistic novel, and one of the best out of the Far East in many years.
This thoughtful book gives a wonderful insight into Japanese life, both the greater cultural beliefs that shape the society as a whole and the minutiae that preoccupy each individual. Entertaining, informative and compassionate, this is a very worthwhile read. A tribute must also be paid to the translator.
(Janet Mary Tomson The Historical Novels Review
[A] complete artistic success [in] its riddling marrative method... precise, mysterious, and moving.
(Times Literary Supplement
About the Author
Saiichi Maruya is an award-winning novelist, translator, and critic. His novel Singular Rebellion was published in English to critical acclaim in 1986. He lives in Tokyo. Dennis Keene is one of the most respected translators of Japanese literature today. He has translated several of Maruya's books, including Singular Rebellion and A Mature Woman. He lives in Oxford, UK.