Welcome to the seventh chapter of our lockdown library—a series of great recommendations from our book exchange group to keep you entertained.

Times are strange, there’s no denying it, but one thing that never changes is the charm of a good book. Check out our first few chapters for some great ideas:

Introducing: Naseera

What’s your name?


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Where are you from?

South Africa

Tell us about yourself (and your reading habits).

I studied in Japan for three years. I prefer the classic Japanese authors as they give a good insight into the Japanese culture and how it has changed or has remained unchanged over the years.

What are you reading right now?

The Aosawa Murders by Riku Onda

Without further ado: the books

books on wood background
Photo by iStock.com/SB

1. All She Was Worth by Miyuki Miyabe

Out of the Japanese crime dramas I have read, this is by far one of the more brilliant ones.. engaging, in both content and writing style. I won’t reveal the plot, just to add to the ‘suspense’!

Order it here.

2. About Love and Beauty by Osamu Dazai

Dazai is famous for his book No Longer Human, a very dark and bleak picture of the human mind. However, About Love and Beauty, a collection of short stories, is the very contrast of No Longer Human and showcases the true genius of Osamu Dazai.

3. Two feel-good options

I have two recommendations for a ‘feel-good’ book: 1) Totto-Chan: The Little Girl at the Window by Tetsuo Kuroyanagi—a semi-autobiography in a era long forgotten, and 2) The Housekeeper and the Professor by Yoko Ogawa, which showcases the best of human sentiment and kindness.

Order Totto-Chan here and The Housekeeper and the Professor here.

If you’re looking for more ideas, we have our own top picks for your consideration as well as a great guide on where to buy cheap books in Tokyo. While it’s not recommended that you go out right now, they’re good for future reference. Also, it’s worth checking if your local library has a delivery service. If all else fails, your trusty Kindle is always an easy option!

Why we’ve chosen the book depository: They offer free worldwide delivery, ship from the UK (so still ok to get to Japan for the time being) and use far less packaging than the likes of Amazon! Of course a Kindle offers the most package-free (and paper-free) option, but if you’re after the real thing, the Book Depository is a great choice.

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Filed under: Living
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