24 October 2011

Kwaidan- Japanese Ghost Stories

This post will be a little different than normal. I'm actually going to put more than one photo in it. The rest of the photos will be at the end of the post though.

Recently I hit up B&N for some new books. I had read everything on my overly piled book shelves at least 3 times or more and needed something new. Thanks to Nate, I have a new set I'm getting into, so I needed the 2nd book. And on my way up to the register I stopped at the bargain and discount shelves. They had all sorts of Halloween/monster/ghost story books on sale, and Gods know I don't love myself some Halloween. This one book happened to catch my eye pretty fast. Usually I trust that instant grab of attention, so I picked it up and gave it a once over. Seemed pretty cool, and I've always wanted to read old Japanese legends and such. So off the register it went with me (along with another book about monsters, but thats another post).

I have to say that after I finally opened it up and read a little bit, I was extremely happy I grabbed it. The book is made up of a collection of stories Lafcadio Hearn translated from old Japanese texts while visiting the country sometime between 1850-1904. So they're not "retold" or "altered". Just translated over to a new language. Along with the stories, which are pretty cool in themselves, there is a ton of very old Japanese art work that was painted for the stories hundreds of years ago. So the whole book is pretty awesome to just look at, let alone read. They also kept some of the Japanese words in the stories with sub-notes on how to say it and what they mean or stand for. Luckily for me, I've been watching anime for years, so I've got a pretty good grasp on how to say some of the things without completely murdering it. Probably not saying it perfectly, but better than normal. I even actually recognized some words right off the top of my head and didn't need the sub-notes.

So yeah. If you're looking for a really nice book to read and gawk over and love scary stories, check this one out. Currently its being sold at B&N for $7.98. Not sure if they have a digital copy out, but I think this is one of those books you need up close to really appreciate the art work in it.

Story title pages look like this.

Smaller pieces of art are scattered through the stories.

Along with much larger pieces at the end or middle of the stories.

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