The Temple of the Golden Pavilion, by Yukio Mishima

In this beautiful and dark novel, we read about a young man's obsession with the famous Golden Temple in Kyoto, Japan. Mizoguchi, who is unpopular and ostracized for his stuttering, is introduced to the temple by his father, and eventually becomes an acolyte there. After seeing the temple every day, he becomes more and more …

The Last Samurai, by Helen Dewitt

No, it has nothing to do with the 2003 Tom Cruise movie (which came out 3 years after this novel was released)--and that I need to make that distinction at all is an illustration of the sad state of American culture, because this book was flipping amazing and I can't believe I've never heard of …

1Q84: Long, rambling, long, repetitive, too long, doesn’t make sense in the end

I finally finished the 1300 page monster 1Q84 and am glad its over. This is a markedly different experience from a different very long book I read this year that left me physically aching for more at the end of it. IQ84 is interesting, weird, creepy at times, creative and has some nice imagery, but …