Sunday, April 16, 2017

April #Bookreviews of #TheTaleofGenji and #TheMakiokaSisters


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In high school and college years, I have heard mentioned but never read these popular world literature novels from Japan, "The Makioka Sisters" by Junichi Tanizaki and "The Tale of Genji" by Lady Murasaki, which I have now time to read and enjoy!

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 Really a book in six parts, "The Tale of Genji" by Lady Murasaki is a story about a popular Japanese Prince who overcomes trials and gains triumph in the Imperial Court! Basically, Genji is considered a "playboy prince" with his various romances and palace intrigues with several woman, as well very thoughtful and kind royal!! Lady Murasaki is a very learned woman according to Japanese noblewomen and wrote this novel over the course of her life!!

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 This contents of the various chapters and parts of "The Tale of Genji" above in the pictures!

 (Source: Blueridge Beauty Blogger)

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In "Tale of Genji" this novel describes Genji was born a prince by his father, The Emperor, and his favorite lady among many wives and concubines in the Imperial Palace in medieval Japan! The author not only describes Genji and characters but also writes a highly detailed aspects of the locations, poems, nature, society, religion and politics as well! Just like with Jane Austin or Shakespeare, sometimes I have to re-read certain passages and footnotes to understand the meaning and culture to this fictional Japanese literature! Because it is very long and detailed, I have managed to read only the first out of six novels of "The Tale of Genji" but plan to check this out again and continue to finish this story which I find very interesting because it describes the trials and triumphs of Prince Genji! 


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 This modern Japanese novel, "The Makioka Sisters" by Junichi Tanizaki, describes four sisters from a declining family trying to make sense of family traditions, both old and new, and fitting in the modern culture of pre- World War I and World War II (before the bombings). This story of the four sisters will have you crying and laughing, and picking sides of each sister for better or worse and how each face life choices and changes!

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I love have this page of listing the main characters as guide while also understanding Japanese culture and traditions during the early 1900s!

Overall, I highly recommend both these novels which offer a lot of incite in the roles of Japanese women during medieval and modern periods of Japan in popular literature!


Until next time...

Ursula

aka Blueridge Beauty Blogger

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