Naoko

Naoko

by Keigo Higashino

Winner of the Japan Mystery Writers Award, Naoko is a black comedy of hidden minds and lives.

Navigating the interstices between the real and the unreal with perfect plot twists, this page-turner is also a critique of gender relations by a male Japanese writer, one of their best-sellng.An everyman, Heisuke works hard at a factory job to provide for his wife, Naoko, and young daughter, Monami.

The family life that resumes between the modest man and a companion who looks like his daughter bu seems like his dead wife is ticklish-funny until it begins hurtling toward a soul-shattering end.In addition to winning Japan's top mystery prize, Naoko inspired a blockbuster movie.

  • Language: English
  • Category: Cultural
  • Rating: 3.83
  • Pages: 288
  • Publish Date: August 1st 2004 by Vertical
  • Isbn10: 1932234071
  • Isbn13: 9781932234077

What People Think about "Naoko"

Higashino's writing is the most plot driven I've read. Heisuke believes his wife lives on in his daughter. At one point Monami speaking through her daughter's mouth bemoans the situation of Japanese women. "Even if she a wife comes to dislike her husband - and don't misunderstand me, I'm just speaking hypothetically - even if she doesn't want to be with him anymore, she can't leave because her future would be uncertain." These words trouble Heisuke leading him to watch his daughter more closely than ever.

Phi nói là cun này c còn mt não hn í ch >'"< Thng hay c, các nhân vt chính mà tác gi không gi bng tên mà c "gã gã gã" thì hn là nhân vt ó cui cùng cng dính lin vi cái kt bun bã nào ó, kiu không cht thì cng b thng... Cái bi cnh mà tác gi t nhân vt này vào cng kì l, ai ch mt ln mun c sng li thi thanh xuân, thc hin li nhng c vng bn thân ã b l...nhng tui có cm giác khi sng li cái thi thanh xuân ó, tình cm dành cho "gã" cng thay i theo tng din bin xy ra trong cuc sng ca cô n sinh ang tri qua giai on p nht, ti non nht i ngi. Các tuyn nhân vt ph khác cng c xây dng khá là n, kiu nh ng ánh giá ngi khác qua b ngoài khi cha bit c ht câu chuyn ca h. Cui cùng âu ó, qua tt c, Naoko và Hirasuke vn dành cho nhau tình yêu, s hi sinh vì nhau lng thm không mun i phng bit c mà nng lòng.

Tóm li là mình cm thy nhc ngi hn sau khi c xong Bí mt ca Naoko.

* Sau khi c lin hai tác phm có th cho là mt mi nht và mt c nht, mình nhn ra c im chung trong cách xây dng nhân vt cng nh ct truyn ca Higashino Keigo. * (T on này có th bit trc ni dung truyn, cân nhc k trc khi c tip) Bí mt ca Naoko chn mt tài ma m và vô cùng hp dn, tác gi cng a ra nhng dn chng c th các câu chuyn kì l v hin tng nhp vong trong th gii thc minh chng cho tài không h vô cn c này. Mình quá phc tác gi trong vic xây dng nên tình tit sau mi ln thc gic là hai m con thay phiên nhau sng cuc i ca Monami, ây cng là mt trong nhng im nhn tuyt vi làm nên s thành công ca toàn tác phm. Ngi ta hay nói ví von rng, ngi Nht thng tuyên dng nhng ai ng gt trong gi làm vic vì ó chính là th hin h quá chm ch không màn gi gic.

The hero, factory foreman Heisuke Sugita is a simple man, a traditional and loving Japanese husband to his spirited wife Naoki and hard-working father of one daughter, Monami. Although Monami's body has survived, it is Naoki's spirit that animates her. Naoki must pretend to be Monami in public, but performs all the tasks of a Japanese wife in private, except one. They maintain a sort of equilibrium for almost five years, during which time Heisuke explores the causes of the crash, discovering the bus driver's secret and meeting both his first and second wives and his son and step-daughter. But then, one night Naoki falls suddenly asleep and without warning, Monami's personality emerges. As Heisuke begins to be concerned about Naoki's survival, Monami asks him to take her to a special park in Yokohama, where her mother and father had their first date. Heisuke, fearful but resigned, prepares with a new boom box and music specially selected to please Naoki, even though buying the CD embarrasses him --it is not music preferred by middle-aged men and the clerk in the music store gives him a look. Monami returns to her body, and the book ends with Heisuke beginning to understand that Naoki has never been with him. Monami marries the son (not really) of the bus driver's first wife, and they all live happily.

Honestly, should I be surprised that Keigo Higashino, the man responsible for Malice, a.k.a the Second Greatest Mindf**k of 2014, shocked me into a stupor when I finished Naoko? Naoko is about a man, Heisuke, whose wife and daughter are in a horrendous bus accident. Now, his wife, Naoko, supposedly dies leaving his daughter, Monami, in a coma. Thus, begins the weirdest 5 year journey between Heisuke and Naoko as they try to keep their relationship but keep up pretenses of how their father/daughter relationship is supposed to be. Heisuke was shown to be in an emotional stasis as he considered Naoko to be his wife. As soon as she saw she couldn't be Heisuke's wife anymore, she became his daughter.

In 1999, he won the Mystery Writers of Japan Inc award for the novel Himitsu (The Secret), which was translated into English by Kerim Yasar and published by Vertical under the title of Naoko in 2004. The Devotion of Suspect X was the second highest selling book in all of Japan fiction or nonfictionthe year it was published, with over 800,000 copies sold.