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The Key by Junichiro Tanizaki

The Key (original 1956; edition 1991)

by Junichiro Tanizaki

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
6211025,048 (3.67)23
Scintillating, elegant, darkly comic, The Key is the story of a dying marriage, told in the form of parallel diaries. After nearly thirty years of marriage, a dried-up, middle-aged professor frenziedly strives for new heights of carnal pleasure with his repressed, dissatisfied wife, resorting to stimulants galore for her: brandy, a handsome young lover. During the day, they record their adventures of the previous night. When they begin to suspect each other of peeping into their respective diaries, it becomes unclear whether each spouse's confessions might not be intended for the other's eyes. Translated from the Japanese by Howard Hibbett.… (more)
Title:The Key
Authors:Junichiro Tanizaki
Info:Vintage (1991), Edition: Reissue, Paperback
Collections:Your library

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The Key by Jun'ichirō Tanizaki (1956)



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» See also 23 mentions

English (5)  French (3)  Hebrew (1)  Dutch (1)  All languages (10)
Showing 5 of 5
Even more intense than I thought. I've been catching drips and drabs of Tanizaki lately and he never fails to impress me with his studies of domination and power and human relations.
( )
1 vote beckydj | Mar 31, 2013 |
This is my personal favourite of Tanizaki's work. Seductive, deceptive, and eerie; it is composed of excerpts from a married couple's diaries as they negotiate their sexual relationship and engage in an implicit power struggle which culminates in death. ( )
1 vote milkyfangs | Nov 22, 2009 |
My second Tanizaki book, and I must admit that I am not really a fan. While I appreciated the premise of this novel, it just didn't manage to draw me in - I didn't find it erotic, or even interesting. I just didn't care about the characters. While Tanizaki appeals to a wide range of discerning readers, sadly I am obviously not one of them. ( )
  ForrestFamily | Dec 30, 2008 |
So captivating it was difficult to put down. I read it in a matter of hours. Illustrates a web of erotic obsession that ultimately leads to destruction, fragmentation, and loss. I plan to read much more of Tanizaki's work. ( )
1 vote poetontheone | Sep 14, 2007 |
A mesmerizing read. Erotic, mysterious, terribly engaging. ( )
1 vote sidecar | Jul 15, 2007 |
Showing 5 of 5
That [The Key] is a work of art can never be in doubt.
added by GYKM | editNew Statesman

» Add other authors (15 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Jun'ichirō Tanizakiprimary authorall editionscalculated
Anhava, TuomasTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Coutinho, M.Translatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hibbett, HowardTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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New Year's Day

This year I intend to begin writing freely about a topic which, in the past, I have hesitated to even mention here.

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