News & Updates

  • 2013/07/29 News

    Discover 21 president talks about how to produce hit books

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    An interview with Yumiko Hoshiba, president of the Discover 21 publishing house,can be read here: How Japan's Discover 21 Hits Hot Trends to Produce Bestsellers … Details

  • 2013/07/18 News

    Fujino and Sakuragi garner Akutagawa, Naoki Prizes

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    The Society for the Promotion of Japanese Literature has announced the winners of the 149th Akutagawa and Naoki Prizes, awarded for the first half of 2013. The Akutagawa went to Kaori Fujino (1980?) for her novella Tsume to me (Nails and Eyes; to be published by Shinchosha), while the Naoki was awarded to Shino Sakuragi (1965?) for … Details

  • 2013/07/15 Updates

    Site update

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    Books from Japan was updated on July 15, 2013, adding synopses for 3 works of fiction, 21 of nonfiction, and 3 children & YA titles. The new titles are listed below. (Italicized English titles are those of finished translations; others are tentative titles.) Literature/Fiction■ Arimasa Osawa, Pandora airando (Pandora Island)■ Tomoka Shibasaki, Watashi ga inakatta machi … Details

  • 2013/07/01 Updates

    Site update

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    Books from Japan was updated on July 1, 2013, adding synopses for 1 work of fiction, 7 works of nonfiction, and 13 children & YA titles. The new titles are listed below. (Italicized English titles are those of finished translations; others are tentative titles.) The Japan Foundation website has also been updated as follows:Summer 2013 issue … Details

  • 2013/06/24 News

    Summer 2013 issue of Japanese Book News now available

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    The Summer 2013 issue of Japanese Book News, a quarterly newsletter published by the Japan Foundation, can now be viewed online at http://www.jpf.go.jp/e/publish/jbn/. The newsletter provides brief descriptions of selected new books as well as information on publishing trends in Japan. … Details

  • 2013/06/15 Updates

    Site update

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    Books from Japan was updated on June 15, 2013, adding synopses for 2 works of fiction, 19 of nonfiction, and 3 children & YA titles. The new titles are listed below. (Italicized English titles are those of finished translations; others are tentative titles.) A new article, "A wild monster chase: yokai and Haruki Murakami," was also … Details

  • 2013/06/06 Column

    A wild monster chase: yokai and Haruki Murakami

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    If any one word sums up the canon of Haruki Murakami's fiction, it is "weird." For the record, I mean that as a compliment. But even the most ardent fan of Murakami in translation—and as we all know, there's a lot of them these days—would be forgiven for missing the echoes of traditional Japanese horror … Details

  • 2013/06/01 Updates

    Site update

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    Books from Japan was updated on June 1, 2013, adding synopses for 4 works of fiction, 3 of nonfiction, and 13 children & YA titles. The new titles are listed below. (Italicized English titles are those of finished translations; others are tentative titles.) A new article, "The allure of the historical?confessions of a translator," was also … Details

  • 2013/05/30 Column

    The allure of the historical—confessions of a translator

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    Historical fiction has been a mainstay of the Japanese literary scene since about 1000 AD, when Murasaki Shikibu penned the opening lines of her classic Tale of Genji: In a certain reign (whose can it have been?) someone of no very great rank, among all His Majesty's Consorts and Intimates, enjoyed exceptional favor.(Translated by Royall Tyler, … Details

  • 2013/05/15 Updates

    Site update

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    Books from Japan was updated on May 15, 2013, adding synopses for 4 works of fiction, 8 of nonfiction, and 4 children & YA titles. The new titles are listed below. (Italicized English titles are those of finished translations; others are tentative titles.) A new article, "On Haruki Murakami's new novel: Liszt's 'Years of Pilgrimage' turned … Details

  • 2013/05/14 Column

    On Haruki Murakami's new novel: Liszt's "Years of Pilgrimage" turned extravaganza

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    It's not unusual for the title of a Haruki Murakami work to refer to a piece of music. "Norwegian Wood," for example, or "South of the Border, West of the Sun." Even when the title makes no such overt reference, music may be featured memorably in the narrative itself, as with Leoš Janáček's Sinfonietta in Murakami's previous novel, … Details

  • 2013/04/15 Updates

    Site update

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    Books from Japan was updated on April 15, 2013, adding synopses for 4 works of fiction, 2 of nonfiction, and 7 children & YA titles. The new titles are listed below. (Italicized English titles are those of finished translations; others are tentative titles.) A new article, "'Light' love stories all the rage," was also added to … Details

  • 2013/04/03 Column

    "Light" love stories all the rage

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    As with other discretionary pleasures like alcohol and tobacco–though I suspect many book lovers will object to such a comparison–the hottest selling titles in fiction appear to indicate a strong preference for "lite" in reading matter as well. So-called "light novels," a distinctively Japanese category of fiction targeted primarily at teens that rose to prominence … Details

  • 2013/04/01 Updates

    Site update

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    Books from Japan was updated on April 1, 2013, adding synopses for 5 works of fiction, 1 of nonfiction, and 2 children & YA titles. The new titles are listed below. (Italicized English titles are those of finished translations; others are tentative titles.) Two new articles, "Fuminori Nakamura's 'The Thief' chosen as finalist for Los Angeles … Details

  • 2013/03/28 News

    Spring 2013 issue of Japanese Book News now available

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    The Spring 2013 issue of Japanese Book News, a quarterly newsletter published by the Japan Foundation, can now be viewed online at http://www.jpf.go.jp/e/publish/jbn/. The newsletter provides brief descriptions of selected new books as well as information on publishing trends in Japan. … Details

  • 2013/03/22 News

    Fuminori Nakamura's "The Thief" chosen as finalist for Los Angeles Times Book Prize

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    The novel Suri by Akutagawa Prize-winning author Fuminori Nakamura, translated into English as The Thief, has been named a finalist for a book prize administered by the Los Angeles Times. Suri was first published by Kawade Shobo Shinsha in October 2009, and the following year received the Kenzaburo Oe Prize. Prize sponsor Kodansha arranged for the … Details

  • 2013/03/22 Column

    Toshihiko Yahagi's alternative goodbye

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    The last time I met Toshihiko Yahagi for drinks at his regular "mess hall" in Akasaka, we faced off over a quibbling but telling remark. I paraphrased Joyce's famous remark "History is a nightmare from which I am trying to awake" by way of saying I thought that deep down people do not actually like, … Details

  • 2013/03/15 Updates

    Site update

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    Books from Japan was updated on March 15, 2013, adding synopses for 2 works of fiction and 43 children & YA titles. The new titles are listed below. (Italicized English titles are those of finished translations; others are tentative titles.) This year marks the 50th anniversary of the Bologna Children's Book Fair, which takes place in … Details

  • 2013/03/01 Updates

    Site update

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    Books from Japan was updated on March 1, 2013, adding synopses for 6 works of fiction, 2 of nonfiction, and 9 children & YA titles. The new titles are listed below. (Italicized English titles are those of finished translations; others are tentative titles.) Literature/Fiction■ Jun Ikeido, Ore-tachi baburu nyuko-gumi (We Bubble-Economy Hires)■ Jun Ikeido, Ruzuveruto gemu … Details

  • 2013/02/13 Updates

    Site update

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    Books from Japan was updated on February 13, 2013, adding synopses for 28 works of fiction. The new titles are listed below. (Italicized English titles are those of finished translations; others are tentative titles.) A new article, "Japan's best-selling fiction of 2012," was also added to the News corner. Literature/Fiction■ Ko Amemura, Nenmaku tokage (Slime Lizards)■ Jiro … Details