The Japan Society
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The Japan Society Review

The Japan Society Review is published on a bimonthly basis, both online and printed (members are entitled to receive a copy by post). Since the starting of the publication in 2006, each issue covers a selection of Japan-related books and films, as well as theatre and stage productions, tv series and exhibitions. Its purpose is to inform, entertain and encourage readers to explore the works for themselves.

The Japan Society Review is possible thanks to the work of volunteers who dedicated their time and expertise to help us to promote the learning and understanding of Japanese culture and society.

British Foreign Secretaries and Japan 1850-1990

Books

British Foreign Secretaries and Japan 1850-1990

Edited by Antony Best and Hugh Cortazzi The essays in this book, written by the two editors and by others including Ian Nish and Thomas Otte, show us how the Anglo-Japanese relationship played out in Whitehall through the careers of [...] Review by Peter Kornicki

Ninja: Unmasking the Myth

Books

Ninja: Unmasking the Myth

By Stephen Turnbull Stephen Turnball’s recent factual work Ninja: Unmasking the Myth acts as an entertaining, yet informative, book that provides both ninja enthusiasts and novices with a clear and thought-provoking [...] Review by George Mullins

The Beast Player

Books

The Beast Player

By Uehashi Nahoko Already widely popular in its native Japan, the story has been adapted into a successful anime and manga series as well as a multi-series publication. Largely unknown in the international market, this new [...] Review by Harry Martin

Japanese Prints: The Collection of Vincent van Gogh

Books

Japanese Prints: The Collection of Vincent van Gogh

Edited by Axel Rüger and Marije Vellekoop Published by the Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam, to accompany their 2018 exhibition Van Gogh & Japan, this catalogue is a collection of enriching essays detailing Van Gogh’s relationship with Japanese [...] Review by Beau Waycott

Killing Commendatore

Books

Killing Commendatore

By Murakami Haruki Murakami Haruki’s Killing Commendatore is an epic novel that fails to capture the wry poignance and fully immersive settings of his earlier works. Whilst there are passages of charming and warm prose, as [...] Review by Beau Waycott

Tanaka Kinuyo: Nation, Stardom and Female Subjectivity

Books

Tanaka Kinuyo: Nation, Stardom and Female Subjectivity

Edited by Irene González-López and Michael Smith Working in the film industry from 1929 to the mid-1970s, Tanaka made films with all the great directors of the era including Ozu Yasujiro, Mizoguchi Kenji, Naruse Mikio, Kinoshita Keisuke, Kurosawa [...] Review by Kate Taylor-Jones

If Cats Disappeared From The World

Books

If Cats Disappeared From The World

By Kawamura Genki In If Cats Disappeared From The World, Kawamura tells the story of a postman in his thirties who discovers that his days are numbered because of a brain tumour which will cause his imminent death. Review by Morgane Chinal-Dargent

The Woman in the Dunes

Books

The Woman in the Dunes

By Abe Kobo The parabolic tale centres on Niki Jumpei, a disillusioned school teacher come amateur entomologist, and chronicles his deceptive imprisonment in a house surrounded by a wall of constantly flowing sand, whose [...] Review by George Mullins

Robata: Japanese Home Grilling

Books

Robata: Japanese Home Grilling

By Silla Bjerrum The underlying premise of Bjerrum’s cookbook is to encourage the reader to adapt a new style of cooking, which has traditionally been the preserve of restaurants, at home using good quality seasonal [...] Review by Niraja Singh

A Tokyo Romance

Books

A Tokyo Romance

By Ian Buruma A Tokyo Romance serves to explain the beginning of a life-long love and fascination with Japanese culture (be it low or high) and, more importantly, how this culture is manifested through art and design. Review by Beau Waycott