You are on page 1of 1


Translated by Leon Picon ISBN: 0-8048-3252-8, Pages: 124

Book Review The Counterfeiter & Stories by Yasushi Inoue

Author: Yasushi Inoue Publisher: Tuttle, Boston, USA, 1965, p124.

Insights into an era and customs that focus on the human condition
Copyright. Peter Hanami, 2012. All rights reserved,

A paperback with three short stories on very different and unrelated topics. It is easy to see why Yasushi Inoue won the Akutagawa prize for Japanese literature in 1950 when you read his work. His unique style is easy to read and describes people, events and includes reflections and analysis. The first story The Counterfeiter is about a famous Kyoto based painter Keigaku who befriends a man whom he shares his success with but also despises because he does forgeries of his works. The story focuses predominately on the forgers life, relationships & the ways he made his living.

but I sometimes wonder if he wasnt even more unhappy than I wasHe wasnt a particularly bad man, but I guess he was just born unluckyp56
Obasute is the second story. Obasute is based on a mountain of the same name whose very name means to discard old people. Based on ancient stories handed down legend has it that older people once they reached a certain aged were abandoned by their families on this mountain. The story is fascinating as Inoue imagines himself trying to do the same with his family and it becomes an obsession.

tales about discarding old folks in the mountains in ancient times have been handed down from generation to generation p73
The final story is titled The Full Moon. Moon viewing is an ancient custom in Japan and the story revolves around the annual parties of a company president and the politics of his work environment.

Kaibara was born superstitious, an ill-omened flat tire was not the occasion for broaching this subjectp122
Yasushi Inoue reveals the era as he investigates & analyzes important issues in a way that share a new light on the human condition.

The Counterfeiter & Stories by Yasushi Inoue