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Eight Million Gods and Demons

Eight Million Gods and Demons - Plume, Penguin Putnam Inc., New York, 2003

This intergenerational novel about the Imura family begins with Emi’s brave fight
against epilepsy. Her husband, Taku, idealist and modernizer, loves Emi,
yet betrays her with Hana, a geisha. Hoping to play a part in world affairs,
Taku’s life reflects the ambitions of his country as it progresses in
its ill-conceived and ill-fated quest for Japanese supremacy in Asia.
Spanning the Japanese Meiji era from the 1890s to the WWII,
the book is a haunting epic of love and loss. The book has been translated into Dutch.
The author translated it into Japanese with the assistance of Satoshi Sonobe.


Amazon Review >>
Sanford Herald Nov. 26, 2003 >>
The Bath Chronicle Nov. 3, 2001 >>
The Bath Chronicle Sept. 25, 2001. 1 >>
2 >>
“Mother-Daughter Readings” at Harvard, Oct. 26 >>
Venue Oct 26 - Sept. 9. 2001 >>
Booklist, Sarah Meador >>

Japan's World War II Legacy

Japan’s World War II Legacy - Quartet, London, 2016

Why did the normally gentle Japanese wage a war so savage and merciless
and had the nation reflected on it sufficiently? This book is an attempt to answer
these questions.

In Part I, based on the interviews with the Japanese veterans conducted
between 2010 and 2014, the author discovered that many of them had been
hiding their memories of the war and suffering. The book tells how a totalitarian
nation brainwashed its young men and trained them to be fascist robots.

It is commonly thought that the Japanese failed to reflect on the war afterwards,
but the author met the members of the post-war generation who mourned deeply
for it, as well as those who were historical revisionists. Readers may find some
saving grace and the answer to the second question in the stories in Part II.

Bookmunch Review >>
Bath Chronicle, 18. Feb. 2016 >>
Asahi Shinbun, Interview with Yoichi Jomaru, 11 October, 2010 >>

People Who Mourn the War

People Who Mourn the War - Kobunken, 2016

Even now, 75 years after the War, the Japanese still do not have a consensus on
how to deal with the history of the War and, in particular, the memory of harm
to other people. This book did interviews with veterans and documents their
experiences. Many former soldiers regret their actions and point out the mistakes
of war leaders.

Asahi Shinbun book review by Masayasu Hosaka,10 April, 2010 >>

Even So I lived
Even So I lived - Nashi-no-Kisha, 2009

In the early years of WW II, nearly 350,000 Allied soldiers were taken prisoners
by Japanese forces in the Asia-Pacific region. Among them, 14,000 people excluding
local soldiers were detained until the end of the war. The author tells stories of six of
the 60,000 British Commonwealth POWs. Some of them said,”Some Japanese
soldiers were kind. In the camp, the best qualities of human nature were demonstrated
as well as the bestial ones.” However, 27% of the prisoners died under the Japanese
army regime which neglected human life and those who survived suffered aftereffects.

Mainichi Shinbun, interview with Yoji Hanaoka,20 February, 2010 >>

Remains of the Dream

Remains of the Dream - Kodansha, 2008

The original "Eight Million Gods and Demons" was written in English by the author
and published in the United Kingdom, the United States and the Netherlands, It was
highly acclaimed. “Yume no Ato (Remains of the Dream)” is the Japanese version
translated from English. 

Old Tips

Old Tips - Information Centre, Tokyo, 2006

Life spans are increasing everywhere in the developed world, and people are living
a second half of life which previous generations did not experience.. How to live
in this extra time given is a new theme common to many people. The English have
a culture of ageing gracefully. Many, not only as individuals but also as members
of society, have a fruitful old life. Whether it's gardening, walking, reading, late
talent, charitable work, or global social contributions, people live at the twilight
of their life with a quiet passion.

Asahi Shinbun, book review by Mikiko Taga, 16 July, 2006 >>

Acht miljoen goden en demonen
Acht miljoen goden en demonen - Sirene, Amsterdam, 2002

The Dutch translation of the “Eight Million Gods and Demons.” 

New Families (in Europe)
New Families in Europe - Impact Publisher, 2003

Traditional nuclear families are less than one-third of all families. Marriage is
considered to be only one form of cohabitation. The number of unmarried mothers
is increasing. Young people do not hurry to get married and stay single or live together.
The society is tolerant of diverse groups of people such as LGBTQ (Lesbian, Gay,
Bisexual, Transgender and Queer or Questioning). Western families today represent
"diversity". Sharing of gender roles, and understanding attitude toward diverse ways of
life are developing. Home sweet home is not an issue of appearance and composition,
but a content. But there is no guarantee of “happily ever after” in any state. 

Copyright 2008 R M. Fossey. All Rights Reserved.