The Devil's Disciple

The Devil s Disciple The first English language translation of a chilling murder mystery by a prolific Japanese detective novelist both psychological and legal

  • Title: The Devil's Disciple
  • Author: Shirō Hamao J. Keith Vincent
  • ISBN: 9781843918578
  • Page: 236
  • Format: Paperback
  • The first English language translation of a chilling murder mystery by a prolific Japanese detective novelist both psychological and legal.

    One thought on “The Devil's Disciple”

    1. Two short stories by an early writer of Japanese crime fiction. We are told in the introduction that the author was an early champion of gay rights in 1920’s – 1930’s Japan and both stories have homoerotic overtones. In Japan at the time this genre was called “erotic grotesque nonsense.” (Clearly something is lost in the translation.) In the first story, the same as the book’s title, a young man is accused of a murder he did not commit. But coincidentally the prosecutor was a former [...]

    2. This book contains two long-short stories by a 1920s/30s pioneer of noir influenced crime fiction in Japan. The title story, The Devil's Disciple has a classic noir plot. Twisted sexuality, infidelity, hate, love, murder. It is also an intensely sustained narrative of moral corruption and reproach. Did He Kill Them?, the second story, is no mere makeweight. It begins as a more conventional tale of a lovequadrangle?d its murderous fallout. But then the ambiguities start to mount. Obsession, posse [...]

    3. "eroguro-nansensu" or as they say in English "erotic grotesque nonesense" was a school of writing in 1920's Japan. Decadent, druggy, kinky, andfun. The most famous writer in that movement without a leader was Edogawa Rampo (yes it is a play on the name Edgar Allen Poe) and Shiro Hamao. Hamao was a lawyer by trade from a very well connected family. He threw that life away to become a crime writer, and an early supporter of gay rights in Japan. Died young, yet a dandy, Hamao had it all. And we can [...]

    4. Japanese mystery fiction is an acquired taste. The Nihon version of the genre remains much more closely tied to its origins in the works of Poe and Wilkie Collins than its European and American counterparts -- indeed, horror in Japan is classified as part of the mystery genre, and books by the likes of Koji Suzuki and Ayatsuji Yukito are as much about figuring out what's going on as grisly supernatural murders.But this also means that Japanese mysteries contain a number of elements that Westerne [...]

    5. Out of the two short novellas here my favourite was called Did He Kill Them?,in what seems to be an open and shut case Hamao manages to turn things around with an ending which is kind of anticipated but the motive and circumstances of the crime are left until the culprit's confession, the translation flows really well, and the story stayed with me after I put the book down . This is the first translation of Hamao's stories available in book format, hopefully not the last. The first story The Dev [...]

    6. What a little gem! Two very, very brief, and utterly brilliant novellas -- teetering on the razor's edge of sexual perversion and murder shame and guilt what a surprising find.The short introduction to this volume is also essential, in placing both Hamao and this genre of ero-guro-nansensu ('dark, erotic nonsense') in its proper context).

    7. Erotic grotesque nonsense why would anyone write anything else? These two stories present adultery, homosexuality, sadomasochism and mahjong in the Taisho Democracy (Asia's answer to the Weimar Republic). Dirty, sexy, cool like one of the better Lady Gaga videos.

    8. Shiro Hamao. Encuentros con el malDe Shiro Hamao no podemos decir muchas cosas, más allá de alguna fecha y algún dato puntual. Su carrera como escritor fue breve, apenas unos pocos años, pero fue suficiente para ser un nombre importante dentro del desarrollo de la novela negra japonesa. Publicados por Satori bajo el título de El discípulo del diablo, su debut en la escritura sería a través de dos relatos: el que da nombre al libro y ¿Fue él quien la mató?, ejemplos emblemáticos de aq [...]

    9. The Devil's Disciple is composed of two short stories: "The Devil's Disciple," and "Did He Kill Them?" Each story is firmly planted in the noir genre, although the stories also reflect the growing movement in art and literature of the time known as "ero-guro-nansensu," or "erotic grotesque nonsense." This movement and more about the form of the two short stories is discussed in the very well-written introduction to the book written by the translator. In The Devil's Disciple, both short stories e [...]

    10. Lumping Shiro Hamao's sashimi-sized slivers of short stories in The Devil's Disciple down as detective fiction would be a little like calling Mark Twain a travel writer, or Charles Dickens that bloke who penned miserable Christmas stuff: in other words, it would do scant justice to a writer who wrote the stories that make up this intriguing, translated volume in 1929, six years before his tragically early death at the age of forty.Originally published in the Japanese magazine Shinseinen, these a [...]

    11. il thriller poliziesco nell'epoca Meijiquattro racconti polizieschi incentrati più sull'analisi psicologica che sull'intreccio, quasi sempre narrati da un avvocato o un giudice, lo stesso Hamao Shiro era un pubblico ministero, e tutti caratterizzati da un colpo di scena finalei intrecci sono tutti a base di tradimenti e perversioni, fa sorridere che all'epoca si considerasse perverso un semplice adultero, ma quasi sempre il matrimonio qui è visto come un'orribile trappola e il marito spesso tr [...]

    12. historias que llenan la mente de una trama tan peculiar y dedicada que te hacen disfrutar cada párrafo y frase de una manera extraordinaria. autores japoneses simplemente son de los pocos capaces de asombrar con palabras ordinarias utilizadas de maneras extraordinarias. sorpresa y mucho deleite enero 2015

    13. These two stories by Hamao Shiro are probably of greater historical than literary interest to most readers but for those intrigued by the development of crime fiction, psychological fiction, and modernism in early modern Japan, this is an excellent and really very entertaining little book.

    14. Cada día me encanta más la literatura japonesa. No sé porque los escritores japoneses fueron tan versátiles de escribir en todos los géneros.

    15. Dos relatos uno más fantástico de otro, ambos son muy parecidos en su estructura y narrativa, muestran el estilo del autor.Sin embargo ambos relatos tienen sus toques de locura y vueltas de tuerca geniales.

    16. H is for HAMAO! (as part of the a-to-z book challenge).This was such a fun read! Despite the noir-ish subject matter, it brightened my day with the author's ability to throw a few twists in his two novellas.The Devil's Disciple is comprised of two novellas: The Devil's Disciple and Did He Kill Them?I'll review each of them separately, but before I do, I think a little background history of Shiro Hamao is necessary. He was a Japanese lawyer-turned-detective novelist who wrote in 1930s, around abo [...]

    17. Per quanto risenta di un lieve sentimentalismo, la produzione di Hamao ha l’enorme merito di portare alla ribalta tematiche dirompenti per il contesto dell’epoca, ad esempio l’omosessualità maschile, con espedienti narrativi sempre diversi e moventi e psicologie mai banali. Lo stile elegante e acuto e le ambientazioni spesso altolocate accompagnano inoltre frammenti di vita che ancora profumano della liberalità degli anni Venti in Giappone.Recensione pubblicata qui: rivistaunaspecie/rece [...]

    18. The parts that are presented as manuscripts are compelling. There are points where I felt like the second story lost a bit of steam, and I started to skim. But the conclusion to that story is worth sticking around for.The first story is some straight hearts of darkness stuff. woof. Needed to take a break during that one.

    19. Man vs. LawIn this book - Man (may have) wonIn reality - Man with money wonI am interested to know why Hamao-san left his post as an attorney and started his writing career. True, he was a very good writer and literary world would have lost a gem if he persisted in practising perverted laws. But what was his reason?

    20. Early Ero-GuroTwo of Hamao's stories are included in this book. Atrocious crimes explained straight from the mouths of the criminals, delving into the psychology of crime and what actually makes a criminal act. Strong themes of misogyny and sexual taboos.

    21. Nice translation. Language choices ("dame," "bereft") slightly anachro, cavalierly awful like a John Banville character ("just finished the shitty meal she prepared and dived back into my research on murder") and proximate to the noir idiom without being hammy.

    22. El libro está compuesto por dos relatos muy interesantes, en los que abunda el misterio, el asesinato y la duda. Nada es lo que parece. El primer relato es el que más me ha gustado. El segundo es algo rebuscado, pero en ambos el listón está muy alto.

    23. It was really nice to read something different. My first experience with heterodox crime writing - love the blurring of good/bad and the use of an unreliable narrator. Also nice to read 1920s Japanese literature for a touch of the decadent. Well written and good use of language.

    24. La primera historia sabe a poco, pero la segunda ("¿Fue él quien los mató?") es brillante, con un desenlace deliciosamente retorcido (y avanzado para su época).

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