Song of Sadness
Translated by Teruyo Shimizu
A multi-layered novel about a changing postwar Japan.
Song of Sadness, a kind of sequel to Endô's acclaimed early work, The Sea and Poison, is a multi-layered novel about a changing postwar Japan. Set in the 1970s, the novel revisits Dr. Suguro, now in late middle age, running a modest clinic in Tokyo's vibrant, seedy Shinjuku district and trying to put behind him a haunting experience from World War II. Weaving together multiple story lines, Endô lays before the reader a cross section of Tokyo in the 1970s: a vain university professor who leads a humiliating double life; a crusading young reporter determined to pursue aging war criminals; two feckless college students as empty of ideals as they are of purpose; an old man dying of cancer; a quixotic foreigner named Gaston; and Suguro. With a vision as humane as it is unflinching, Endo examines the often impossible complexities of real forgiveness in a world of inscrutable cruelty and suffering.
You May Also Be Interested In