China Lover

China Lover, Ian Buruma

I recently read China Lover, by Ian Buruma. It is a fascinating historical fiction narrated by three men who are mesmerized by real life Japanese actress Yamaguchi Yoshiko: a Japanese cultural officer in Japanese occupied Manchuria, a US film writer in US occupied Japan, and a Japanese terrorist imprisoned in Lebanon. Buruma, a prolific author and Japan expert, provides a compelling history of twentieth century Japan, film and cross-cultural desires. The middle section is based on the life story of noted American expat and film scholar Donald Richie (see his Japan Journals: 1947-2004).

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