Inspector Imanishi Investigates

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This is a wonderful time capsule book written in Japanese in 1961 by Seicho Matsumoto and finally translated in 1989.

There are two groups of people who will like this read: those who enjoy a good mystery and those who like to learn about other cultures. There are some difficulties for the modern American reader; the original language is stilted in the high literary style of Japan at that time and the action is not as fast paced as is the current American style. It is more in line with an early Christie.

A man is found in the rail yards, brutally murdered and in spite of a massive search, his name and home remain undiscovered. As the other police return to more pressing duties, Imanishi continues the search, slowly piecing together small bits of information which leads to the murderer who is arrested at the airport just before he flees the country.

If your only interest is reading a good mystery, you may want to give it a pass, but if you enjoy a look at other cultures, this is a good read.

 

Mike Lawrence

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