Conde Nast Traveller

Whether you’re a devout Japanophile or contemplating your very first trip, there’s no better armchair escape than diving into a book.

Japan is one of the most beguiling countries on earth, with a mile-long list of acclaimed books parsing its history and culture. After you’ve torn through the heavy-hitters (Soseki Natsume’s satirical I Am a Cat, Mineko Iwasaki’s eye-opening memoir Geisha, A Life, Haruki Murakami’s Tokyo-electric tour de force After Dark, Lafcadio Hearn’s haunting Japanese Ghost Stories, and John W. Dower’s Pulitzer Prize winner, Embracing Defeat: Japan in the Wake of World War II, to name just a handful), turn your attention to these engrossing Japanese books, each one about—or at least set in—the Land of the Rising Sun.

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