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Yasunari Kawabata was born near Osaka in 1899 and was orphaned at the age of two. His first stories were published while he was still in high school and he decided to become a writer. He graduated from Tokyo Imperial University in 1924 and a year later made his first impact on Japanese letters with Izu Dancer. He soon became a leading figure the lyrical school that offered the chief challenge to the proletarian literature of the late 1920s. His writings combine the two forms of the novel and the haiku poems, which within restrictions of a rigid metre achieves a startling beauty by its juxtaposition of opposite and incongruous terms. Snow Country (1956) and Thousand Cranes (1959) brought him international recognition. Kawabata died by his own hand, on April 16 1972.
Thousand Cranes is translated from the Japanese by Edward G. Seidensticker (1921-2007), who was a prominent scholar of Japanese literature.
Beautifully written. Lyrical and mesmerising. Kawabata is a writer of fine distinction, who evokes the subtleties of life and culture in Japan.Published on 26 April 2013 by christine rogers
An easy read and an evocative story about love, desire and attraction in the context of ancient customs, in this case the Japanese tea ceremony. Read morePublished on 9 April 2012 by Phil O'Sofa
Similar in mood and approach to Kawabata's exquisite Snow Country, this one just isn't as engaging. As with Snow Country, it's more about mood and asociation of ideas and images... Read morePublished on 11 Jan. 2007 by Greshon