July 11, 2019

The number of working age Japanese hits an all time low according to the Nikkei

Japanese workers commuting in Tokyo
Picture: Japanese workers commuting in Tokyo




"The number of working-age Japanese stands at 74.23 million, a mere 59.5% of the total population -- an all-time low that reflects the aging of the country."



Source: Nikkei Asian Review, July 11, 2019
https://asia.nikkei.com/Economy/Foreigners-ease-labor-crunch-as-Japan-s-workforce-shrinks


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July 01, 2019

Book Review Naoko By Keigo Higashino





Review Copyright Peter Hanami.2018. All Rights Reserved

Title: Naoko

Author: Keigo Higashino

Translated from the Japanese by: Kerim Yasar

Publisher: Vertical Inc, NY, NY, USA

Year: 2004

ISBN: 978-1-932234-07-7

Pages: 282


A tragic accident brings a family closer  together

Keigo Higashino takes the reader on a very warm and personal journey of grief between a father, mother and daughter. Set in Toyko, Japan we meet  Heisuke a factory manager who learns about his families death while watching the evening news,  both his wife and daughter have been killed in a bus crash on the ski slopes.

The book explores the steps one goes through when grieving a loved oneThe Japanese setting adds a unique  cultural insights for non-Japanese readers which add a dimension  to the overall depth and dimension of the story.

A fun, light and fast moving story that keeps you page turning with short chapters and a display of characters, settings and events.

Naoko has been made into a movie starring David Duchovny.

An intriguing take on death, grief and how individuals deal with it in creative ways.


June 01, 2019

Book Review The Dark Room by Junnosuke Yoshiyuki

Book Review The Dark Room by Junnosuke Yoshiyuki








A man who has had a carefree life as a writer reflects deeply on his life after the death of his wife Keiko after a car accident cut short their marriage. He has had a string of women in his life since but none can fill the gap. 


Set in post-world war II Tokyo we get insights to the man’s life as a writer, his daily rituals, work briefs and his relationships with bosses and women. 


A friend Tsunoki approaches him and asks him to consider a manuscript about a diary of his encounters with women, he tries to reject the offer but slowly accepts. 


This book it seems is that manuscript and we gain details of his relationships with inn girls, Takako, Natsue and Maki who all have a place in his life but who he never invites home.



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