In these seven stories, Tanizaki, 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. A young man is erotically imprisoned by the memory of his mother. A tattoo artist transforms the body of an exquisite woman into teeming canvas of her inner nature. A beautiful blink musician exacts the ultimate sacrifice from the man who both her lover and her disciple. These and other gripping scenarios of possession are told with such poise that Seven Japanese Tales is guaranteed to fascinate from beginning to end, leaving a haunting impression on the reader.
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December 20, 2011
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