(book cover links to Goodreads)

Keywords: horror, short story collection, cultural (Japan)


In old Edo, the past was never forgotten. It lived alongside the present, in dark corners, and in the shadows. In these tales, award-winning author Miyuki Miyabe explores the ghosts of Japan, and the spaces of the living world they inhabit. Written with a journalistic eye and a fantasist’s heart Apparitions bring the restless dead, and those who encounter them, to life.

Nine stories that are all a bit chilling and creepy and oh, so accurately Edo period.

These are perfect examples of the Japanese open- ending or vague-ending, not to mention the beliefs and superstitions that ran the time.

Miyuki Miyabe is a great writer and she knows her audience and craft. Brave Story is still the end all be all novel, but if you’re looking for something shorter and more digestible these short stories of creepiness and murder and demons is where to start.

A word on the translation itself: really spot on in places, but leaving distances in their old Japanese was a bit “meh”. If you aren’t going to translate some terms the reader still needs to know what these mean. That’s what footnotes are for. Use them.


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