Yoshimoto hits some of the same notes that a previous generation's literary masters (say, Kawabata or Tanizaki) might sound, and yet the effect seems artless, spontaneous and wonderfully fresh.” Los Angeles Times Book Review
Banana Yoshimoto’s warm, witty, and heartfelt depictions of the lives of young Japanese have earned her international acclaim and best-seller status, as well as a place among the best of contemporary Japanese literature. In N.P., a celebrated Japanese writer has committed suicide, leaving behind a collection of stories written in English, entitled N.P. But the book may never be published in his native Japan: each translator who takes up the ninety-eighth story chooses death tooincluding Kazami’s boyfriend, Shoji. Haunted by Shoji’s death, Kazami discovers the truth behind the ninety-eighth storyand comes to believe that everything that had happened was shockingly beautiful, enough to make you crazy.” Banana Yoshimoto’s language sweeps the reader immediately into the streets of Tokyo, with her uncanny ability to merge the echoes of Japanese traditional literature with a contemporary plot. N.P. is essential reading, a stunningly simple tale of youthful desires and obsessions.
Praise for N.P.:
Fantastical, almost timeless quality . . . [Yoshimoto’s] ability to make everyday events seem romantic is a rare gift.”Harper’s Bazaar
Yoshimoto hits some of the same notes that a previous generation's literary masters (say, Kawabata or Tanizaki) might sound, and yet the effect seems artless, spontaneous and wonderfully fresh.”Los Angeles Times Book Review
The disturbing, ironic, relentless clarity of Kazami’s voice casts a spell . . . Yoshimoto has given readers a snapshot of a generation of Japanese women caught between traditional expectations that define them in male-dominated marriages and their desire to remain young, pure and free.”Denver Post
[An] ethereally mesmerizing . . . novel of Japan’s Generation X.”Chicago Sun Times
Banana Yoshimoto hits the generational mark again . . . N.P. is essential reading for everyone who has ever felt lost while trying to find their lives through coffee and credit cards . . . N.P. focuses on death and love and, most of all, overcoming loss and realizing that not everything is explainable in words.”Detroit Free Press
Deeper than trendy . . . miraculous . . . [a] poignant achievement that draws its power from an atmosphere of earnestnessfrom that honesty of youth, untouched by cynicism . . . Deceptively simple.”Toronto Globe and Mail
Charming . . . Positively exuberant . . . The narrators of her novels exude pure optimism, even as they suffer.”Washington City Paper
Yoshimoto throws four trendy young Japanese into a quandary that involves the reader instantly. Swept up by her heroine, Kazami Kano, off we run through the streets of Tokyo . . . Almost one with the girl, we feel the oppressive summer heat, her loneliness, blind trust and choking fear.”Milwaukee Journal
Japan’s leading pop novelist follows her successful debut with an ambitious novel of darker themesincest, suicide, and the supernaturalthat recalls more classic Japanese fiction . . . A contemporary, hip treatment . . . that nonetheless resonates with echoes of the past.”Kirkus Reviews
Compelling and clever, Yoshimoto writes with the sort of lucidity that usually takes hours and hours to appear so effortless . . . But what really makes N.P. click . . . are the indomitable personalities of the main figures.”Trenton (NJ) Times
Every bit as good as Yoshimoto’s first book . . . perhaps better.” South Bend Tribune
Banana Yoshimoto has won numerous prizes in her native Japan, and her first book, Kitchen, has sold millions of copies worldwide. Her books have been translated and published in more than twenty countries. She lives in Tokyo.