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Villain (Vintage Crime/Black Lizard)

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Villain (Vintage Crime/Black Lizard) Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

A young insurance saleswoman is found strangled at Mitsuse Pass. Her family and friends are shocked and terrified. The pass — which tunnels through a mountainous region of southern Japan — has an eerie history: a hideout for robbers, murderers, and ghostly creatures lurking at night.

Soon afterward, a young construction worker becomes the primary suspect. As the investigation unfolds, the events leading up to the murder come darkly into focus, revealing a troubled cast of characters: the victim, Yoshino, a woman much too eager for acceptance; the suspect, Yuichi, a car enthusiast misunderstood by everyone around him; the victim’s middle-aged father, a barber disappointed with his life; and the suspect’s aging grandmother, who survived the starvation of postwar Japan only to be tormented by local gangsters. And, finally, there is desperate Mitsuyo, the lonely woman who finds Yuichi online and makes the big mistake of falling for him.

A stunningly dark thriller and a tapestry of noir, Villain is the English-language debut for Shuichi Yoshida, one of Japan’s most acclaimed and accomplished writers. From desolate seaside towns and lighthouses to love hotels and online chat rooms, Villain reveals the inner lives of men and women who all have something to hide. Part police procedural, part gritty realism, Villain is a coolly seductive story of loneliness and alienation in the southernmost reaches of Japan.

Review:

“A complex and powerful exploration of the lives of a victim, a killer and their families and friends....Set in the sterile world of online dating and love hotels, Villain is a moving and disturbing novel about loneliness, lies and the gap between expectation and reality. Highly recommended.” The Guardian (London)

Review:

“A convincing portrait of today’s Japan.” Rob Sheffield, The Week (Best Books)

Review:

“A page-turning mystery....Ably translated by Philip Gabriel....[It] will make you think and will leave you guessing right up to the very end.” BSCReview.com

Review:

“A ripping good story of murder and secrets....What sets Yoshida’s tale apart, however, is the way it plays with our modern identity issues. If you can upload a misleading and overly flattering photo to your online dating profile and clean up the shadowy bits of your life story, why can’t you do the same thing in your offline life? Start over, move away from your dinky little hometown, change your name, maybe even convince yourself that your lies are the truth. Where better to explore this transformation than Japan, where the contrast between its welcoming embrace of the wired world and its strong roots in tradition and custom makes for some pretty wicked tension....[Yoshida] writes with the cool confidence of a seasoned storyteller.” Jessa Crispin, NPR.org

Review:

“A compelling examination of loneliness and desperation.” Kathleen Daley, Newark Star-Ledger

Review:

“A psychological puzzle....Engrossing and unsettling....We encounter an assortment of contemporary Japanese citizens so alienated from one another and from any shared humanity that they seem like strangers even to themselves....This is an environment where people have internalized their own ambiguities. A character for whom one begins to feel sympathy may reveal a dark side — or perhaps only feign to reveal it in order to protect someone else.” Tom Nolan, The Wall Street Journal

Review:

“Shuichi Yoshida, Japan’s Stieg Larsson?...Villain is more than a typical ‘Whodunnit?’ suspense...Yoshida focuses on the motivations behind the crime through his portrayal of lost youth struggling to find direction and purpose....Suspense junkies that get a taste for the Japanese twist on the genre after reading Villain can rest assured that there is more to come.” Rosie Kusunoki Jones, Japan Real Time, a Wall Street Journal blog

Review:

“Hypnotizing....While the unfolding mystery holds our interest, Yoshida is really most concerned with exploring the alienation of his young characters and the lack of connective tissue between them. As the story takes a surprising turn toward the end, the author saves the biggest question for his readers: Who is the real villain: a killer who feels remorse, or a person who feels nothing at all?” Booklist

Review:

"Yoshida examines the lives of a victim and a killer in this subtle but powerful novel about collective guilt and individual atonement, his first book to appear in English translation....Multiple points of view reveal both slight and dramatic changes in a host of other people, including acquaintances and relatives, affected by the murder. Most impressively, Yoshida’s complex portrait of Japanese society leaves no doubt as to his characters’ actions, but tantalizing doubts about their meaning." Publishers Weekly

Review:

"Thrilling....The sort of book that is difficult to put down. [Villain] lays out a panorama of modern Japanese society, a patchwork of composed people of various classes and occupations....A modern literary achievement the like of which is rarely seen." Japan Book News

Synopsis:

A chilling and seductive story of loneliness, desperation, and murder, Villain is the English-language debut of one of Japan’s most popular writers.

A woman is killed at a ghostly mountain pass in southern Japan and the local police quickly pinpoint a suspect. But as the puzzle pieces of the crime slowly click into place, new questions arise. Is a villain simply the person who commits a crime or are those who feel no remorse for malicious behavior just as guilty? Moving from office parks and claustrophobic love hotels to desolate seaside towns and lighthouses, Shuichi Yoshida’s dark thriller reveals the inner lives of men and women who all have something to hide.

About the Author

Shuichi Yoshida was born in Nagasaki, Japan, in 1968. The author of nine books, he has won numerous literary awards in Japan and has also had several of his short stories adapted for Japanese television. Villain won the Osaragi Jiro Prize and the Mainichi Publishing Culture Award, two prestigious Japanese prizes. Yoshida lives in Tokyo.

Product Details

ISBN:
9780307454942
Author:
Yoshida, Shuichi
Publisher:
Vintage Books
Subject:
Literary
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Series:
Vintage Crime/Black Lizard
Publication Date:
20110831
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Language:
English
Pages:
304
Dimensions:
8 x 5.18 x 0.63 in 0.5 lb

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Related Subjects

Featured Titles » General
Featured Titles » Literature
Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z
Fiction and Poetry » Mystery » A to Z

Villain (Vintage Crime/Black Lizard) Used Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$10.95 In Stock
Product details 304 pages Vintage Books - English 9780307454942 Reviews:
"Review" by , “A complex and powerful exploration of the lives of a victim, a killer and their families and friends....Set in the sterile world of online dating and love hotels, Villain is a moving and disturbing novel about loneliness, lies and the gap between expectation and reality. Highly recommended.”
"Review" by , “A convincing portrait of today’s Japan.”
"Review" by , “A page-turning mystery....Ably translated by Philip Gabriel....[It] will make you think and will leave you guessing right up to the very end.”
"Review" by , “A ripping good story of murder and secrets....What sets Yoshida’s tale apart, however, is the way it plays with our modern identity issues. If you can upload a misleading and overly flattering photo to your online dating profile and clean up the shadowy bits of your life story, why can’t you do the same thing in your offline life? Start over, move away from your dinky little hometown, change your name, maybe even convince yourself that your lies are the truth. Where better to explore this transformation than Japan, where the contrast between its welcoming embrace of the wired world and its strong roots in tradition and custom makes for some pretty wicked tension....[Yoshida] writes with the cool confidence of a seasoned storyteller.”
"Review" by , “A compelling examination of loneliness and desperation.”
"Review" by , “A psychological puzzle....Engrossing and unsettling....We encounter an assortment of contemporary Japanese citizens so alienated from one another and from any shared humanity that they seem like strangers even to themselves....This is an environment where people have internalized their own ambiguities. A character for whom one begins to feel sympathy may reveal a dark side — or perhaps only feign to reveal it in order to protect someone else.”
"Review" by , “Shuichi Yoshida, Japan’s Stieg Larsson?...Villain is more than a typical ‘Whodunnit?’ suspense...Yoshida focuses on the motivations behind the crime through his portrayal of lost youth struggling to find direction and purpose....Suspense junkies that get a taste for the Japanese twist on the genre after reading Villain can rest assured that there is more to come.”
"Review" by , “Hypnotizing....While the unfolding mystery holds our interest, Yoshida is really most concerned with exploring the alienation of his young characters and the lack of connective tissue between them. As the story takes a surprising turn toward the end, the author saves the biggest question for his readers: Who is the real villain: a killer who feels remorse, or a person who feels nothing at all?”
"Review" by , "Yoshida examines the lives of a victim and a killer in this subtle but powerful novel about collective guilt and individual atonement, his first book to appear in English translation....Multiple points of view reveal both slight and dramatic changes in a host of other people, including acquaintances and relatives, affected by the murder. Most impressively, Yoshida’s complex portrait of Japanese society leaves no doubt as to his characters’ actions, but tantalizing doubts about their meaning."
"Review" by , "Thrilling....The sort of book that is difficult to put down. [Villain] lays out a panorama of modern Japanese society, a patchwork of composed people of various classes and occupations....A modern literary achievement the like of which is rarely seen."
"Synopsis" by , A chilling and seductive story of loneliness, desperation, and murder, Villain is the English-language debut of one of Japan’s most popular writers.

A woman is killed at a ghostly mountain pass in southern Japan and the local police quickly pinpoint a suspect. But as the puzzle pieces of the crime slowly click into place, new questions arise. Is a villain simply the person who commits a crime or are those who feel no remorse for malicious behavior just as guilty? Moving from office parks and claustrophobic love hotels to desolate seaside towns and lighthouses, Shuichi Yoshida’s dark thriller reveals the inner lives of men and women who all have something to hide.

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