Authors

Risa Wataya

Risa Wataya 綿矢りさ

Risa Wataya (1984–)  was born in Kyoto and graduated from Waseda University. She made her literary debut while still in high school, when her novel Insutoru (Install) won the 2001 Bungei Prize; at 17, she was the youngest recipient to date. She then garnered the Akutagawa Prize for the latter half of 2003 with her second novel, Keritai senaka (I Want to Kick You in the Back) when she was 19, making her the youngest ever to take that prize as well. Striking a chord especially with readers her own age, the hardcover sold over 120 million copies, becoming the first Akutagawa Prize winner to sell over a million copies since Ryu Murakami’s Almost Transparent Blue was published 28 years before. She commenced a full-time writing career immediately upon graduating from college. In 2012, Kawaiso da ne? (Isn’t She Pitiful?) made her the youngest author to ever receive the Kenzaburo Oe Prize. Writer Gen’ichiro Takahashi (Sayonara Gangsters) has praised her as "a genius." Other works in her oeuvre include Yume o ataeru (To Give a Dream), Katte ni furuetero (Tremble All You Want), Shoga no aji wa atsui (The Taste of Ginger Is Hot), and Funshi (Death by Indignation).

Books by Risa Wataya
  • Book

    I Want to Kick You in the Back

    Hatsu, the first-person narrator, is a freshman in high school and a member of the track and field club. It is June, and two months have passed since school started. As her classmates begin to form cliques, she decides to isolate herself. She is sick …

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  • Book

    Isn't She Pitiful?

    Jurie, who works at a department store, likes to daydream. She imagines being in an earthquake, and fantasizes about the hero who will come to her rescue. She sees this hero as someone who will place her welfare first and foremost on his mind. It ought to …

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