Book picks similar to
Demon at Agi Bridge and Other Japanese Tales by Haruo Shirane
Rashōmon and Seventeen Other Stories
Ryūnosuke Akutagawa - 1927
‘Rashōmon’ and ‘In a Bamboo Grove’ inspired Kurosawa’s magnificent film and depict a past in which morality is turned upside down, while tales such as ‘The Nose’, ‘O-Gin’ and ‘Loyalty’ paint a rich and imaginative picture of a medieval Japan peopled by Shoguns and priests, vagrants and peasants. And in later works such as ‘Death Register’, ‘The Life of a Stupid Man’ and ‘Spinning Gears’, Akutagawa drew from his own life to devastating effect, revealing his intense melancholy and terror of madness in exquisitely moving impressionistic stories.A WORLD IN DECAY- Rashōmon- In a Bamboo Grove- The Nose- Dragon: The Old Potter's Tale- The Spider Thread- Hell ScreenUNDER THE SWORD- Dr. Ogata Ryōsai: Memorandum- O-Gin- LoyaltyMODERN TRAGICOMEDY- The Story of a Head That Fell Off- Green Onions- Horse LegsAKUTAGAWA'S OWN STORY- Daidōji Shinsuke: The Early Years- The Writer's Craft- The Baby's Sickness- Death Register- The Life of a Stupid Man- Spinning Gears
Night on the Galactic Railroad & Other Stories from Ihatov
Kenji Miyazawa - 2013
This volume collects stories which focus on Miyazawa's love of space and his use of the galaxy as a metaphor for the concepts of purity, self-sacrifice and faith which were near and dear to his heart. "The Nighthawk Star" follows an lowly bird as he struggles to transform himself into something greater, a constellation in the night sky; "Signal & Signal-less" depicts a pair of star-crossed train signals who dream of eloping to the moon; and "Night on the Galactic Railroad," Miyazawa's most famous work, tells the story of two boys as they journey upon a train that traverses the cosmos, learning the true meaning of friendship, happiness and life itself along the way.
Tales of Old Japan: Folklore, Fairy Tales, Ghost Stories and Legends of the Samurai
Algernon Bertram Freeman-Mitford - 1871
B. Mitford traveled widely with his parents as a youth and lived in various European countries. From 1866-70, he served as an attaché with the British legation at Edo (Tokyo) — one of the first foreign diplomats to do so. During his brief stay there, Mitford lived through a period of dramatic and tumultuous change in Japanese history. A feudal nation on his arrival, Japan had entered the era of “Westernization” before he left some three years later. During that time, however, he quickly and thoroughly mastered the Japanese language and acted as an interpreter between the young Japanese Emperor and British royalty.Mitford’s famous collection of classic tales (the first to appear in English) covers an engrossing array of subjects: grisly accounts of revenge, knightly exploits, ghost stories, fairy tales, folklore, a fascinating eyewitness account of a hara-kiri ceremony, gripping narratives of vampires and samurai, Buddhist sermons, and the plots of four Noh plays.A treasury, as well, of information on most aspects of Japanese life, with information on locales, customs, and characters, the illustrated volume delights as it entertains, chronicling acts of heroism, devotion, ruthlessness, and chivalry that illuminate the island nation's culture.“One of the first and in many ways still one of the best books on Japan.” — The Japanese Times.“An excellent introduction to Japanese literature.” — Mainichi Daily News.
Kwaidan: Stories and Studies of Strange Things
Lafcadio Hearn - 1904
Faceless creatures haunt an unwary traveler. A beautiful woman — the personification of winter at its cruelest — ruthlessly kills unsuspecting mortals. These and 17 other chilling supernatural tales — based on legends, myths, and beliefs of ancient Japan — represent the very best of Lafcadio Hearn's literary style. They are also a culmination of his lifelong interest in the endlessly fascinating customs and tales of the country where he spent the last fourteen years of his life, translating into English the atmospheric stories he so avidly collected.Teeming with undead samurais, man-eating goblins, and other terrifying demons, these 20 classic ghost stories inspired the Oscar®-nominated 1964 film of the same name.
Royall Tyler - 1980
Stories of miracles, visions of hell, jokes, fables, and legends, these tales reflect the Japanese worldview during a classic period in Japanese civilization. Masterfully edited and translated by the acclaimed translator of The Tale of Genji, these stories ably balance the lyrical and the dramatic, the ribald and the profound, offering a window into a long-vanished though perennially fascinating culture.
Tales of Moonlight and Rain
Ueda Akinari - 1776
They subtly merge the world of reason with the realm of the uncanny and exemplify the period's fascination with the strange and the grotesque. They were also the inspiration for Mizoguchi Kenji's brilliant 1953 film Ugetsu.The title Ugetsu monogatari (literally "rain-moon tales") alludes to the belief that mysterious beings appear on cloudy, rainy nights and in mornings with a lingering moon. In "Shiramine," the vengeful ghost of the former emperor Sutoku reassumes the role of king; in "The Chrysanthemum Vow," a faithful revenant fulfills a promise; "The Kibitsu Cauldron" tells a tale of spirit possession; and in "The Carp of My Dreams," a man straddles the boundaries between human and animal and between the waking world and the world of dreams. The remaining stories feature demons, fiends, goblins, strange dreams, and other manifestations beyond all logic and common sense.The eerie beauty of this masterpiece owes to Akinari's masterful combination of words and phrases from Japanese classics with creatures from Chinese and Japanese fiction and lore. Along with The Tale of Genji and The Tales of the Heike, Tales of Moonlight and Rain has become a timeless work of great significance. This new translation, by a noted translator and scholar, skillfully maintains the allure and complexity of Akinari's original prose.
Death in Midsummer and Other Stories
Yukio Mishima - 1953
Nine of his finest stories were selected by Mishima himself for translation in this book; they represent his extraordinary ability to depict, with deftness and penetration, a wide variety of human beings in moments of significance. Often his characters are sophisticated modern Japanese who turn out to be not so liberated from the past as they had thought.In the title story, "Death in Midsummer," which is set at a beach resort, a triple tragedy becomes a cloud of doom that requires exorcising. In another, "Patriotism," a young army officer and his wife choose a way of vindicating their belief in ancient values that is as violent as it is traditional; it prefigured his own death by seppuku in November 1970. There is a story in which the sad truth of the relationship between a businessman and his former mistress is revealed through a suggestion of the unknown, and another in which a working-class couple, touching in their simple love for each other, pursue financial security by rather shocking means.Also included is one of Mishima's "modern Nō plays," remarkable for the impact which its brevity and uncanny intensity achieve. The English versions have been done by four outstanding translators: Donald Keene, Ivan Morris, Geoffrey Sargent, and Edward Seidensticker.Photograph on back cover by T. Kamiya; cover design by David Ford
Japanese Tales of Mystery & Imagination
Edogawa Rampo - 1956
Collected in this chilling volume are some of the famous Japanese mystery writer Edogawa Rampo's best stories—bizarre and blood-curdling expeditions into the fantastic, the perverse, and the strange, in a marvelous homage to Rampo's literary 'mentor', Edgar Allan Poe.
Seven Japanese Tales
Jun'ichirō Tanizaki - 1963
In these seven stories, the author of The Makioka Sisters explores the territory where love becomes self-annihilation, where the contemplation of beauty gives way to fetishism, and where tradition becomes an instrument of refined cruelty.
Where the Wild Ladies Are
Aoko Matsuda - 2016
Where the Wild Ladies Are is populated by these and many other spirited women—who also happen to be ghosts. This is a realm in which jealousy, stubbornness, and other excessive "feminine" passions are not to be feared or suppressed, but rather cultivated; and, chances are, a man named Mr. Tei will notice your talents and recruit you, dead or alive (preferably dead), to join his mysterious company.In this witty and exuberant collection of linked stories, Aoko Matsuda takes the rich, millennia-old tradition of Japanese folktales—shapeshifting wives and foxes, magical trees and wells—and wholly reinvents them, presenting a world in which humans are consoled, guided, challenged, and transformed by the only sometimes visible forces that surround them.
Kiki's Delivery Service
Eiko Kadono - 1985
So when her thirteenth birthday arrives, she's eager to follow a witch's tradition: choose a new town to call home for one year.Brimming with confidence, Kiki flies to the seaside village of Koriko and expects that her powers will easily bring happiness to the townspeople. But gaining the trust of the locals is trickier than she expected. With her faithful, wise-cracking black cat, Jiji, by her side, Kiki forges new friendships and builds her inner strength, ultimately realizing that magic can be found in even the most ordinary places.Blending fantasy with the charm of everyday life, this enchanting new translation will inspire both new readers and dedicated fans.