The Diving Pool: Book summary and reviews of The Diving Pool by Yoko Ogawa

The Diving Pool

Three Novellas

by Yoko Ogawa

The Diving Pool

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Book Summary

The first major English translation of one of contemporary Japan's bestselling and most celebrated authors

From Akutagawa Award-winning author Yoko Ogawa comes a haunting trio of novellas about love, fertility, obsession, and how even the most innocent gestures may contain a hairline crack of cruel intent.

A lonely teenage girl falls in love with her foster brother as she watches him leap from a high diving board into a pool--a peculiar infatuation that sends unexpected ripples through her life.

A young woman records the daily moods of her pregnant sister in a diary, taking meticulous note of a pregnancy that may or may not be a hallucination--but whose hallucination is it, hers or her sister's?

A woman nostalgically visits her old college dormitory on the outskirts of Tokyo, a boarding house run by a mysterious triple amputee with one leg.

Hauntingly spare, beautiful, and twisted, The Diving Pool is a disquieting and at times darkly humorous collection of novellas about normal people who suddenly discover their own dark possibilities.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"Starred Review. The surreal plotlines of the three pieces interact brilliantly, underscoring the utter desperation to which extreme loneliness can lead." - Kirkus Reviews.

"There's nothing magical about these calmly realistic first-person narratives, yet at times each is as spine-tingling as a Stephen King creep show." - Booklist.

"Ogawa’s tales possess a gnawing, erotic edge." - Publishers Weekly.

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Author Information

Yoko Ogawa Author Biography

Yoko Ogawa is the author of The Diving Pool, The Housekeeper and the Professor, and Hotel Iris. Her fiction has appeared in The New Yorker, A Public Space, and Zoetrope. Since 1988 she has published more than twenty works of fiction and nonfiction, and has won every major Japanese literary award. Her novel The Housekeeper and the Professor has been adapted into a film, The Professor's Beloved Equation. She lives in Ashiya, Japan, with her husband and son.

Other books by Yoko Ogawa at BookBrowse
  • The Housekeeper and the Professor jacket
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