A Man
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A Man

3.97 (2,705 ratings by Goodreads)
By (author)  , Translated by 

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Description

A man follows another man's trail of lies in a compelling psychological story about the search for identity, by Japan's award-winning literary sensation Keiichiro Hirano in his first novel to be translated into English.

Akira Kido is a divorce attorney whose own marriage is in danger of being destroyed by emotional disconnect. With a midlife crisis looming, Kido's life is upended by the reemergence of a former client, Rié Takemoto. She wants Kido to investigate a dead man--her recently deceased husband, Daisuké. Upon his death she discovered that he'd been living a lie. His name, his past, his entire identity belonged to someone else, a total stranger. The investigation draws Kido into two intriguing mysteries: finding out who Rié's husband really was and discovering more about the man he pretended to be. Soon, with each new revelation, Kido will come to share the obsession with--and the lure of--erasing one life to create a new one.

In A Man, winner of Japan's prestigious Yomiuri Prize for Literature, Keiichiro Hirano explores the search for identity, the ambiguity of memory, the legacies with which we live and die, and the reconciliation of who you hoped to be with who you've actually become.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 302 pages
  • 137.16 x 208.28 x 22.86mm | 294.84g
  • Amazoncrossing
  • Seattle, United States
  • English
  • 1542006872
  • 9781542006873
  • 79,747

Review quote

"Hirano's English-language debut, a shape-shifting psychological thriller...As back-alley gritty and entertaining as a Raymond Chandler novel, the book asks what it means to be 'you, ' and suggests that the answer means nothing at all. Hirano's stylish, suspenseful noir should earn him a stateside audience." --Publishers Weekly

"Keiichiro Hirano's A Man has all the trappings of a gripping detective story: a bereaved wife, a dead man whose name belongs to someone else, mysterious coded letters, a lawyer intent on uncovering the truth. Together with a willfully understated title, however, these features belie a deeply thoughtful novel whose mystery premise gives way to an examination of the most profound questions of identity and artistic creation. In a work so rooted in Japanese cultural history, the questions posed by the author become distinctly literary, moving ultimately to address the very practice of novel-writing." --Arts Desk

"What sort of novel is A Man? Hirano dangles a number of possibilities before the reader, from existential thriller to full-on spy novel. That a novel that deals so thoroughly with the ambiguities of identity should have its own identity be in question is utterly fitting. Did I mention it's also a gripping read?" --Words Without Borders

"Hirano has continued to grapple with new themes ever since his debut. In this work, he has arrived at the primal question of what validates human existence." --Yoko Ogawa, author of The Memory Police

"A riveting examination of desire and identity, A Man patiently unpicks the nature of unfulfilled aspirations. Keiichiro Hirano has written a multilayered tale of human reinvention, at once eminently readable and deeply moving." --Tash Aw, author of The Harmony Silk Factory and Five Star Billionaire

"There is no doubt that Keiichiro Hirano is an author with an extremely pioneering and modern spirit. His works have opened up a very imaginative space in analyzing and exploring the spiritual world of humanity." --Sheng Keyi, author of Northern Girls and Death Fugue
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Rating details

2,705 ratings
3.97 out of 5 stars
5 32% (864)
4 41% (1,117)
3 21% (557)
2 4% (121)
1 2% (46)
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