Tony's Reading List: The Book of the Dead

An undisputed classic, and with the English edition coming with a few added extras, this is a book many Japanophiles will be wanting to get their hands on.

The Book of the Dead (Orikuchi Shinobu)I had very hopes for The Book of the Dead, and I certainly wasn’t disappointed.  It’s a modern(ish) novel with an ancient feel, a clever story where the simplicity of the action belies its complex genesis.  Orikuchi was a folklorist and academic, and he uses several events and myths from his ethnological studies to create the work.  Shiga Tsuhiko, the man in the tomb, is based on Ōtsu, a prince who died towards the end of the seventh century, and the woman he sees before his death, Mimimo no Toji, has imprinted herself in his mind, leading to his belief that she is calling him.

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Published in: Tony's Reading List