Read the book that sold over two million copies in Japan and became a national obsession
Keigo Higashino is a Japanese author chiefly known for mystery novels. Born in Osaka, he started writing novels while still working as an engineer at Nippon Denso Co. He won the Edogawa Rampo Prize, which is awarded annually to the finest mystery work, in 1985 for the novel Hokago (After School) at age 27. Subsequently, he quit his job and started a career as a writer in Tokyo.
In this tightly plotted crime novel, Higashino pits a brilliant math teacher, Tetsuya Ishigami, against Dr. Manabu Yukawa, a shrewd physicist whose deductive prowess has earned him the nickname Detective Galileo. When Ishigami overhears his lovely neighbor, Yasuko Hanaoka, strangling her abusive ex-husband in the next apartment, he rushes to her aid. Smitten, he concocts a perfect, if complex, alibi for her. It's enough to mystify the investigating detective, but when Dr. Yukawa, the policeman's friend, begins his own sleuthing, and Yasuko falls in love with another man, both alibi and participants bend under the pressure. Even with its surprises and twists, the story unfolds in a manner more intellectually satisfying than emotionally gripping. But David Pittu's narration adds a humanity and passion to the proceedings, especially evident in the scenes in which Ishigami goes head to head with wily Dr. Yukawa. The former's calm manner of speaking seems to be concealing a feverishly working mind, while the doctor is evidently enjoying himself immensely. Pittu transforms those and other moments from mere wordplay into a thrilling game of cat and mouse in the Alfred Hitchcock tradition. A Minotaur hardcover. (Feb.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
A brilliant Tokyo mathematician secretly longs for his beautiful neighbor. When he overhears her killing her brutal ex-husband in self-defense, he helps her to conceal the crime. Assigned to the case is Detective Kusanagi, who enlists the aid of Yukawa, a physics professor whose help he has previously solicited. The Holmesian Yukawa, however, is torn, as the mathematician is his old college friend. Higashino's mysteries are immensely popular in Japan, with several, including this one, adapted into films or TV dramas there. What might be classified as a procedural develops considerable psychological depth, aided by Tony Award-winning actor David Pittu's subtle, sensitive reading, through which he artfully manages to accentuate the characters' conflicted emotions. Recommended for crime novel enthusiasts and those interested in Japanese culture. [The Minotaur: St. Martin's hc, winner of Japan's prestigious Naoki Prize, also received a starred review, LJ 11/15/10.-Ed.]-Michael Adams, CUNY Graduate Ctr. Lib. (c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Intricate and beguiling...if you like riddles inside enigmas, it will please you no end. - GuardianThe plot is taut and intriguing...this psychological driver sets it apart from more run-of-the-mill crime thrillers...Agatha Christie would be mightily impressed. - Financial TimesA very clever novel that explores the consequences of a murder from the perspectives of the murderer, the police investigators, and the man who engages in a battle of wits with the police...a page-turning thriller. - Irish TimesIt's the details that hold the key to this enjoyable read. - We Love This BookTwo million copies sold in Japan and it's easy to see why. - Independent Summer Reads