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Heaven: A Novel by Mieko Kawakami
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Heaven: A Novel (original 2009; edition 2021)

by Mieko Kawakami (Author), Sam Bett (Translator), David Boyd (Translator)

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3031876,717 (3.71)30
Shortlisted for the International Booker Prize 2022 From the bestselling author of Breasts and Eggs and international literary sensation Mieko Kawakami comes a sharp and illuminating novel about a fourteen-year-old boy subjected to relentless bullying. In Heaven, a fourteen-year-old boy is tormented for having a lazy eye. Instead of resisting, he chooses to suffer in silence. The only person who understands what he is going through is a female classmate, Kojima, who experiences similar treatment at the hands of her bullies. Providing each other with immeasurable consolation at a time in their lives when they need it most, the two young friends grow closer than ever. But what, ultimately, is the nature of a friendship when your shared bond is terror? Unflinching yet tender, sharply observed, intimate and multi-layered, this simple yet profound novel stands as yet another dazzling testament to Mieko Kawakami's uncontainable talent. There can be little doubt that it has cemented her reputation as one of the most important young authors at work today. TIME's 100 Must-Read Books of 2021. 'Mieko Kawakami is a genius' - Naoise Dolan, author of Exciting Times 'An expertly told, deeply unsettling tale of adolescent violence' - Vogue Translated from the Japanese by Sam Bett and David Boyd.… (more)
Member:Scarlet_Lin
Title:Heaven: A Novel
Authors:Mieko Kawakami (Author)
Other authors:Sam Bett (Translator), David Boyd (Translator)
Info:Europa Editions (2021), 192 pages
Collections:Your library
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Heaven by Mieko Kawakami (2009)

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» See also 30 mentions

English (17)  Japanese (1)  All languages (18)
Showing 1-5 of 17 (next | show all)
Started out liking it a lot, but I had more mixed feelings in the second half or so. Partly it seemed a bit repetitive and partly a bit random. But there were definitely some good parts all the way through. ( )
  steve02476 | Jan 3, 2023 |
Once I started this book, I couldn't set it down -at the same time both touching and horrifying - at times I felt physically ill. After just reading about the tragic real-life suicide of transgender activist Henry Berg-Brousseau, this really had even more of an impact on me. So much hate in this world, hate without any real source other than difference. Sad that it is the sensitive and caring that are most likely to kill themselves then the monsters that drive them to it. ( )
  viviennestrauss | Dec 23, 2022 |
Exceeded my expectations! This story is told through the eyes of two bullied middle school students who bond over their shared experience. This beautiful written and translated book explores deep philosophical and religious themes about weakness vs. strength, intention, free will, and more. And though all of these are difficult topics the book pulls you along making you want to keep reading.

Highly recommended. ( )
  paroof | Nov 22, 2022 |
fiction (translated into English from Japanese) - a boy with a lazy eye is relentlessly bullied and becomes friends with a girl with depression who is also bullied. CW/TW: violent and humiliating bullying, depression, eating disorder, suicidal thoughts (there is also some teenage boy masturbation).

This was good (thankfully it ends with hope) but really difficult to read a lot of the time - the author is very skilled at making the reader experience the humiliation, pain (there is a lot of blood), despair, and self hate of the main characters. There is a strong sense that, as is true in real life, both characters might not survive to the end of the story. Kojima definitely needs a ton of therapy and probably some prescription medications.

because the subject matter is so difficult I probably would not recommend this for general consumption, but I connected with this story a lot more strongly than I did with the protagonist in Ms Ice Sandwich. ( )
  reader1009 | Sep 17, 2022 |
In a world full of Momoses, be an unnamed narrator. ( )
  SarahMac314 | Aug 12, 2022 |
Showing 1-5 of 17 (next | show all)
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One day towards the end of April, between classes, I unzipped my pencil case and found a folded triangle of paper between the pencils.
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Shortlisted for the International Booker Prize 2022 From the bestselling author of Breasts and Eggs and international literary sensation Mieko Kawakami comes a sharp and illuminating novel about a fourteen-year-old boy subjected to relentless bullying. In Heaven, a fourteen-year-old boy is tormented for having a lazy eye. Instead of resisting, he chooses to suffer in silence. The only person who understands what he is going through is a female classmate, Kojima, who experiences similar treatment at the hands of her bullies. Providing each other with immeasurable consolation at a time in their lives when they need it most, the two young friends grow closer than ever. But what, ultimately, is the nature of a friendship when your shared bond is terror? Unflinching yet tender, sharply observed, intimate and multi-layered, this simple yet profound novel stands as yet another dazzling testament to Mieko Kawakami's uncontainable talent. There can be little doubt that it has cemented her reputation as one of the most important young authors at work today. TIME's 100 Must-Read Books of 2021. 'Mieko Kawakami is a genius' - Naoise Dolan, author of Exciting Times 'An expertly told, deeply unsettling tale of adolescent violence' - Vogue Translated from the Japanese by Sam Bett and David Boyd.

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In Heaven, a fourteen-year old boy is tormented for having a lazy eye. Instead of resisting, he chooses to suffer in silence. The only person who understands what he is going through is a female classmate, Kojima, who experiences similar treatment at the hands of her bullies. Providing each other with immeasurable consolation at a time in their lives when they need it most, the two young friends grow closer than ever. But what, ultimately, is the nature of a friendship when your shared bond is terror?

Unflinching yet tender, sharply observed, intimate and multi-layered, this simple yet profound novel stands as yet another dazzling testament to Mieko Kawakami’s uncontainable talent. There can be little doubt that it has cemented her reputation as one of the most important young authors at work today.
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