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Six Fourが720円

 


今年出版されたばかりの横山秀夫の推理小説64の英訳が720円で買えるんですね。Financial Timesの夏の読書特集で紹介されていたFiction in translationの12冊のうち一冊で選ばれていたので知りました。

Last updated: July 1, 2016 5:51 pm
The FT’s summer books 2016
From the fightback against robots to Capability Brown, FT writers and guests select their books of the year so far


Six Four, by Hideo Yokoyama, translated by Jonathan Lloyd-Davies, Quercus, RRP£16.99
A Tokyo detective’s search for his missing daughter leads him to revisit another teenage girl’s unsolved disappearance in this best-selling novel by Japan’s answer to Stieg Larsson. Fast-paced and brimming with local detail, Yokoyama’s atmospheric police procedural sold a million copies in six days when it was originally published.


我々にとっては日本の翻訳小説の方が理解しやすいですが、それは反対に言えば日本の状況を理解していない外国の読者には難しいものとなるようです。その辺を前向きに日本のガイドブックとGuardianの書評では評価してくれています。

Six Four by Hideo Yokoyama – the crime thriller that is a publishing phenomenon in Japan
The plot would grip in any language, but, for readers in the west, there is an extra fascination to this prime example of the ‘box set novel’

Mark Lawson
Friday 4 March 2016 12.00 GMT

The plot would grip in any language but, for readers in the west, there is extra fascination in Six Four being not just a police procedural but a guide book to Japan. Some of the local details – such as the cops’ repeated concerns with “losing face” – might have been rejected by an English writer on Japan as too stereotypical. Other material, though, is educationally exotic. The investigation of the Shoko kidnapping is interrupted by the death and elaborate obsequies of a Japanese emperor, whose passing even complicates the question of the era in which the crime took place: the novel’s title comes from numbers with a particular significance in the Japanese calendar.

The police commissioner’s photo-op with Shoka’s family will involve the ritual burning of incense, while on the way to interview a witness, cops stop to buy a traditional home-visiting gift of rice crackers. On another home visit, Mikami knows, from the sight of a shrine in the corner of the room, that a key original witness has died. Mikami and a professional rival have a competitive history in martial arts, which is significant to the levels of respect in their relationship. A Japanese convention of granting widespread anonymity to those involved in crime cases gives the protagonist a professional crisis.

Such details were presumably commonplace for Japanese readers; for a foreigner, they keep the cop novel unusually fresh and tense. But the book also has universal elements. After a brutal experience with bureacracy, Mikami reflects that “all organisations were the same”, and, as he uncovers various deceits and concealments by the police, Six Four serves as a handbook to how coverups have been run in governments, corporations and churches all over the world.


Independentの方も読み応えがあると評価してくれていますが、Mで始まる登場人物が多くて紛らわしいと苦言を呈しています。その辺もやはり日本になじみがあるかの違いがでそうです。

Six Four, by Hideo Yokoyama - book review: A giant kidnapping thriller from Japan
Translated by Jonathan Lloyd-Davies, this is an idiosyncratic and richly worked narrative

Barry Forshaw
Monday 7 March 2016

But does the book justify its considerable length? Well, it is not a book for the casual reader. Yokoyama demands the closest attention, with a distancing narrative style (much of the plot is recalled after the event); then there's the multiplicity of names beginning with “M” (a glossary of characters might have been a useful addition; I kept turning back to find out which character I was reading about – Mikami, fine, but who was Mikuri and who was Minako?).

In the final analysis, though, Six Four gives back in abundance everything that the reader is prepared to give. For all its prolixity, this is an idiosyncratic and richly worked narrative, demonstrating that crime fiction can be freighted with the weight and authority of serious literature. The patient reader will find themselves handsomely rewarded.


我々日本人は、ドストエフスキーの登場人物が覚えられないなどと愚痴をこぼしやすいですが、それと同じなんでしょうね。1970年代のアメリカの変容が気になったのでNixonlandを読み始めたのでそれが終わったらこのSix Fourを読んでみようと思います。

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