the sailor who fell from gace with the sea by Yukio Mishima


the sailor who fell from grace with the sea


In his time Yukio Mishima was one of Japans most successful writers been considered three times for the nobel prize ,this is one of the best known of over forty novels he wrote in his lifetime ,he also wrote plays and short stories in his time .he did after a failed coup to restore the emperors powers in japan that had been lost at the end of the second world war ,he committed ritual suicide . 

the book- 

Starts in post war japan it follows Noboruo a wayward young lad who is in a gang and has been held in his room at night by his mother to prevent him joining the gang  ,this lad is voyeuristic watching his mother dress and her liaisons with Ryjuli a sailor ,when he hangs out with a gang and the chief the head of the gang . the gang does  a particular brutal attack in the middle of the book ,Noburuo resents his mothers affair with Ryjuli and purses him with the gang .he initially likes her mothers lover but then sees flaws in him .Noburo is a typical teenager in a lot of ways this is about him wanting to break free and his sexual awakening but in a extreme way 

my view – 

this is a short review because i didn’t really enjoy this book ,the synopsis read a bit like a japanese lord of the flies or clockwork orange it did have a bit of that but also felt a bit forced by the writer am not sure if this was the translation or the style of writing ,it did give a view in to the  more traditional side of japan that we don,t  always get chance to see in a lot of modern japanese novels .the attack describe in the middle of the book is quite shocking and nearly made me put the book down !

April 2010


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