Books: Kinship of Guilt

THE LAKE by YASUNARI KAWABATA Translated by REIKO TSUKIMURA 160 pages. Kodansha International $6.95.

Yasunari Kawabata is probably best known in the West for his novels Snow Country (1956) and Thousand Cranes (1959). Which is to say that this most Japanese of Japanese writers remains somewhat obscure to Western readers despite his 1968 Nobel Prize for Literature. His fiction seems to be most valued in Japanese for those qualities that are most difficult to render in trans lation: precision and delicacy of image, the shimmer of haiku, an allusive sad ness and minute sense of the impermanence of things.

The Lake, written in...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!