Shinchōsha (Shinchō Bunko), 2014. 141 pp. ¥400. ISBN 978-4-10-106932-6.
Also published in: n/a
Ishii also writes about food in appetizing detail, providing masterful descriptions of scenes in which the characters prepare and enjoy traditional Japanese foods like matsutake mushrooms and hamo (pike conger).
The second half of the book is a dramatic account of the birth of the couple’s child in a maternity hospital in Kyoto, where the wife is determined to give birth naturally, even though she is having her first child at the age of forty-three. Although childbirth is a basic part of life, it is a subject that is rarely addressed in contemporary Japanese literature. In his imaginative depiction of the fetus just before birth, as a living thing that moves and feels within the womb, Ishii transcends the limitations of the documentary I-novel. This alone would be enough to make his novel an important, groundbreaking achievement. (NM)
Translation rights inquiries
Shinchōsha Publishing Co., Ltd.
(attn. Kimura Tatsuya, Foreign Rights Section)
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