Kinshu by Teru Miyamoto
Autumn Brocade

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As delicate as the shimmering wings of a dragonfly, Kinshu—an epistolary novel by one of Japan's most popular literary authors—is a masterpiece of simplicity and beauty.

Life, death, karma—these interwoven themes form the heart of this lyrical novel in letters, Kinshu: Autumn Brocade, the first work to be published in the U.S. by Teru Miyamoto, one of Japan's most popular literary writers.

The word kinshu has many connotations in Japanese—brocade, poetic writing, the brilliance of autumn leaves—and resonates here as a vibrant metaphor for the complex, intimate relationship between Aki and Yasuaki. Ten years after a dramatic divorce, they meet by chance at a mountain resort. Aki initiates a new correspondence, and letter by letter through the seasons, the secrets of the past unfold as they reflect on their present struggles. From a lover's suicide to a father's controlling demands, to Mozart's Thirty-Ninth Symphony ("a veritable marvel of sixteenth notes"), to the karmic consequences of their actions, the story glides through their deeply introspective and stirring exchanges. What begins as a series of accusations and apologies, questions and excuses, turns into a source of mutual support and healing. Chosen as an Outstanding Work of Japanese Literature by the Japanese Literature Publishing Project.

About Teru Miyamoto

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Born in Kobe in 1947, Teru Miyamoto is one of Japan's most celebrated authors. He has received Japan's most prestigious literary distinctions, including the Osamu Dazai Prize and the Akutagawa Prize, and several of his works have been made into award-winning movies, including Maborosi, directed by Hirokazu Koreeda. Roger K. Thomas is Professor of Japanese Language and Literature at Illinois State University. He has published translations of Teru Miyamoto, Yashushi Inoue and Fumiko Enchi.
Published February 26, 2007 by New Directions. 208 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction, Education & Reference. Fiction

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Kirkus Reviews

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Epistolary novel detailing the gradual enlightenment of a divorced couple, the noted Japanese author's U.S. debut.

May 20 2010 | Read Full Review of Kinshu: Autumn Brocade

Publishers Weekly

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In this 1982 epistolary novel, the first of award-winning Miyamoto's works to appear in the U.S., the chance encounter of a divorced couple sparks an eight-month correspondence explaining their

Aug 29 2005 | Read Full Review of Kinshu: Autumn Brocade

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