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Night Autopsy Room: Seven Tales of Life, Death, and Hope

by M.D. Yoshio Sakabe

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Night Autopsy Room tells a story of Yoshio, a medical student living in Japan just after the World War II. In the autopsy room of the medical college, he meets seven spirits, who want to tell the stories of their lives to him.

The spirits have lived hard lifes, and their stories are stories of hardship and oppression. The first spirit is a woman who was in Hiroshima when the atomic bomb fell, the second is a Korean man who faced discrimination in Japan, the third a Japanese woman driven to suicide by discrimination in America and so on.

I made it through the first two stories, then I had to quit - it was too depressing. Not the stories, though, even though they told awful tales of hard life. No, what bugged me was the way the author used the suffering of the people he created to promote religion. If there's something I really hate, it's telling people that suffering in this life is good, because it gives you a better place in Heaven after you die - that's the basic idea of the second story.

I simply can't tolerate that kind of rubbish. The spirits were a rather too excited about Jesus, too, the author seems very certain of his faith. Too bad I don't share it. The stories itself were ok, though the prose was somewhat wooden. Whether that is the author's or the translator's fault, I can't tell, but the way the stories were told was, to be frank, boring: surely these horrid fates could've been told more vividly.

(Review of Night Autopsy Room at Mikko reads) ( )
  msaari | Jul 22, 2008 |
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