Japanese Authors

I am working on this page, it’s not finished yet!

This is a list of all the Japanese authors I have read so far in Japanese

Kaeruko Akeno – 朱野帰子

Kaeruko Akeno is mostly known for her novel 『わたし、定時で帰ります。』about a woman who refuses to work overtime. This is an excellent book if you are interested in Japan work culture and an entertaining novel in general. I will be on the lookout for new books by this author.

Yugo Aosaki – 青崎有吾

Yugo Aosaki is an author of light mystery novels. I read two books, and they were entertaining, but I also always ended up disliking Aosaki’s fictional detectives.

Hiro Arikawa – 有川浩

Jiro Asada – 浅田次郎

Shinya Asashiro – 浅白深也

I don’t read a lot of light novels, but I definitely enjoyed the Shinya Asashiro’s novel 『アンフィニシュトの書』. I hope to read more by this author in the future (there aren’t many books available for now).

Bakarhythm – バカリズム

バカリズム is the stage name of comedian Hidetomo Masuno (升野 英知). I tried to read 架空OL日記, a fake diary of a OL which was originally published on a blog. Many readers thought it was a real diary written by a woman. I personally did not like it and the book was a DNF.

Mikako Brady – ブレイディみかこ

Mikako Brady is the author of the best-seller 『ぼくはイエローでホワイトで、ちょっとブルー 』 where she talks about her son’s experience as a half-Japanese child growing up in the UK. This book was not exactly what I expected, but I would be happy to read more by Brady if the future.

Osamu Dazai – 太宰治

(TBR)

Kazuhiro Fujihara – 藤原和博

Kazumasa Hayami – 早見和真

Tokuya Higashigawa – 東川篤哉

Tokuya Higashigawa has written several series of humoristic detective fiction. I enjoy the Ikagawa City series very much. I also tried The After-Dinner Mysteries series (謎解きはディナーのあとで), but I did not like it as much. I found that it almost felt like reading a children’s book.

Keigo Higashino – 東野圭吾

My favourite author of crime fiction and the first author I read in Japanese. I love Higashino’s books, I particularly enjoyed the Kyoichiro Kaga series and overall prefer his early and more classic detective novels.

Kurara Himukana – 日向奈くらら

I cannot find any information about this author. The book I read (私のクラスの生徒が、一晩で24人死にました。) also seem to be their only work.

Keiichiro Hirano – 平野啓一郎

Tetsuya Honda – 誉田哲也

Tetsuya Honda is an author of mystery novel and has written several series as well. I only read one book which I found quite disturbing (it had scenes of torture) even though I am used to reading thrillers that contain violent scenes. I will certainly read other books by this author though.

Naoki Hyakuta – 百田尚樹

Naoki Hyakuta is mostly known for his novel, The Eternal Zero. He denies Japanese war crimes during and before WWII. I was curious to see what a revisionist would write about Korea, so I read his book 『今こそ、韓国に謝ろう』, and I was completely dumbfounded. This might be the most disgusting book I have ever read.

Noriko Ibaraki – 茨木のり子

Yuki Ibuki – 伊吹有喜

(on my TBR)

I have 『ミッドナイト・バス』 on my TBR for ages. There is a film adaptation of this novel, which looks great.

Takuji Ichikawa – 市川拓司

Takuji Ichikawa has written many novels, but I have only read his most famous one 『いま、会いにゆきます』, which has been adapted into film in Japan and more recently in Korea. The book is great, but it is not really the kind of story/genre that I enjoy, so I am not sure whether I will read more by this author or not.

Jun Ikeido – 池井戸潤

Jun Ikeido is a famous author of business novels. Most of his books have been adapted into drama. I have only read one novel, but I loved it more than I can say. I plan on reading Jun Ikeido’s most famous books in the future.

You Ikenaga – 池永陽

Neko Inoue – 井上ねこ

(on my TBR)

I have 『ばんじょうに死を描く』on my TBR for a while now. It is apparently the first and only novel by Neko Inoue. It was published in 2019:

Kenji Kosugi – 小杉健治

Magi Inoue – 井上真偽

(On my TBR)

Magi Inoue is mostly known for the その可能性はすでに考えた series (two books). These books have been ranked highly in various rankings for mystery novels. I tried the first one but could not go past the first few pages… This book deserves another try though.

Kotaro Isaka – 伊坂幸太郎

Miu Kakiya – 垣谷美雨

Mitsuyo Kakuta – 角田光代

Mitsuyo Kakuta is a very prolific author, but I have only read one single novel, 『愛がなんだ』 which I liked but did not love, and overall, was not really the kind of novels that I enjoy the most. This being said, I will certainly try other books by this author in the future.

Kazuma Kamura – 加村一馬

(TBR)

Sang-jung Kang – 姜尚中

Sachiko Kashiwaba – 柏葉幸子

Sachiko Kashiwaba is a well-known author of children’s books. I believe that she mainly writes fantasy, which is not my favourite genre, so I don’t know if I will read more of her books in the future.

Miaki Kato – 加藤実秋

Yoko Kato – 加藤陽子

Yasunari Kawabata – 川端康成

(TBR)

Genki Kawamura – 川村元気

Emi Kitagawa – 北川恵海

Yasushi Kitagawa – 喜多川泰

Yasushi Kitagawa has written several novels that all seem to be very popular. I have only read one, and it felt like reading a self-care book, even though it was fiction. It was a feel-good story that also contained encouraging messages that people can apply in their life. It is personally not really the kind of books I like to read, but I understand why he is so popular.

Yasumi Kobayashi – 小林泰三

Yuka Kobayashi – 小林由香

Shoji Kondo – 近藤昭二

Bin Konno – 今野敏

Shiki Kuzumi – 久住四季

Miri Masuda – 益田ミリ

Naoki Matayoshi – 又吉直樹

Keisuke Matsuoka – 松岡圭祐

(On my TBR)

Keisuke Matsuoka is the author of A Scandal in Japan, a Sherlock Holmes pastiche translated by James Balzer. This is the book I have on my TBR, and the last time I tried to read it, I found it too difficult to read in Japanese. I shall give it another try!

Sugaru Miaki – 三秋縋

I don’t read a lot of young adult love stories but I like Sugaru Miaki’s novels. They all seem to be quite melancholic (depressing?), with characters falling into despair but somehow accepting it rather than moving to a brighter outcome.

En Mikami – 三上延

Yukiko Mari – 真梨幸子

Shoko Miki – 三木笙子

(on my TBR)

Shoko Miki is an author of mystery novels, many of them set during the Meiji period. I have one of these on my TBR.

Kanae Minato – 湊かなえ

When you think “mystery novels”, Kanae Minato is certainly one of the first authors who comes to mind. I find that her books focus more on the characters than the mystery, so I think you can enjoy her books even if you are not a big reader of mystery novels. Among the books I read, I loved some and others not so much, but 『告白』 was truly excellent.

Miyuki Miyabe – 宮部みゆき

Miyuki Miyabe is mostly known for her mystery novels, several of which have been translated into English. I am reading the Saburo Sugimura series, but will read other non series books in the future as well. While I haven’t read many books yet, Miyuki Miyabe counts among my favourite authors.

Teru Miyamoto – 宮本輝

I love Teru Miyamoto, but I must also admit that his books, especially the former ones, are quite challenging to read at my level. The main reason is certainly because most of his books contain a lot of dialect, which makes dialogues difficult to read to me. From what I have read, I think that his most recent writings might be a bit easier to read in Japanese.

Yukio Mishima – 三島由紀夫

(TBR)

Shion Miura – 三浦しをん

Moegara – 燃え殻

Moegara is very influential on Twitter, he published his first novel 『僕たちはみんな大人たちになれなかった』 in 2017. I read it but did not really like it… maybe my Japanese was not good enough at the time and maybe I should give it another try…

Eto Mori – 森絵都

(on my TBR)

Eto Mori is a novelist who mostly write literature for children and young adults. I have one of her books (出会いなおし) on my TBR pile for years but never got around to reading it for some reason.

Haruki Murakami – 村上春樹

I read some of Haruki Murakami’s short stories in translation, and while I liked them, I never became a fan of Murakami. In Japanese, I have only read one novel, Norwegian Wood, and I did not like it. I would say that Murakami belongs to the easiest authors to read in Japanese though, so I will certainly read other books in the future.

Sayaka Murata – 村田沙耶香

Toshikazu Nagae – 長江俊和

Sin Nakamachi – 中町信

Fuminori Nakamura – 中村文則

(on my TBR)

Shichiri Nakayama – 中山七里

Shichiri Nakayama is a prolific author of mystery novels. He has written several detective series. I am reading the detective Hayato Inukai series (刑事犬養隼人シリーズ).

Yujiro Nakayama – 中山裕次郎

Yujiro Nakayama is a surgeon who has written several books of medical non fiction. His most recent series of novels about a young intern’s journey to become a surgeon is very popular, and will get a drama adaptation. I recommend it if you like medical fiction.

Koichi Nitori – 似鳥航一

(TBR)

Mahokaru Numata – 沼田まほかる

Yoko Ogawa – 小川洋子

Etsu Okabe – 岡部えつ

Hideo Okuda – 奥田英朗

Riku Onda – 恩田陸

Riku Onda is a prolific author of mystery and fantasy novels. I read her debut novel and did not really like it, but I will certainly try other bo oks in the future.

Ai Ota – 太田愛

Edogawa Rampo – 江戸川乱歩

I have read some short stories in translation, but in Japanese, I have only read detective novels of the Kogoro Akechi series. Reading all the books of the series is my challenge for 2021.

Yuji Sakamoto – 坂元裕二

(DNF)

Momoko Sakura – さくらももこ

Momoko Sakura is well known for creating 『ちびまる子ちゃん』, a manga series that has been adapted into anime. Momoko Sakura has also written a lot of essays. I have read several of them and loved them all.

Akira Sano – 佐野晶

Akira Shiga – 志駕晃

(TBR)

Soji Shimada – 島田荘司

(TBR)

Rio Shimamoto – 島本理生

The only book I read by Rio Shimamoto is 『ファーストラヴ』, which won the Naoki Prize. To be honest, I really did not like this book. Given that this one was a prize winner, it did not make me want to read Shimamoto’s other books…

Kiyoshi Shimizu – 清水潔

Kiyoshi Shimizu is a journalist well known for his role in the Ashikaga murder case where he helped to prove Toshikazu Sugaya’s innocence. I only read the book about the Ashikaga murder case, but Shimizu has written other true crime stories, and I will certainly pick one of them soon.

Yumi Shimizu – 清水由美

Makoto Shinkai – 新海誠

Takeshi Shiota – 塩田武士

I have only read Takeshi Shiota’s most famous novel, 『罪の声』 a novel closely inspired by the Glico Morinaga case. The novel is a best-seller and has been adapted into film. While I did enjoy 『罪の声』, I am not sure whether I will read Shiota’s other books.

Kazufumi Shiraishi – 白石一文

(on my TBR)

Yukiya Shoji – 小路幸也

Yukiya Shoji is a prolific author who has written several series as well. The most famous is certainly 東京バンドワゴンシリーズ. I only read one mystery novel, which I liked, but did not love. Maybe I will try another book by this author later.

Osamu Soda – 宗田理

Osamu Soda is well known for his ぼくらシリーズ, a series of children’s books where we follow the same group of friends from middle to high school. I read the first novel of the series and enjoyed it, but I don’t think that I will continue the series.

Natsume Soseki – 漱石夏目

(TBR)

Kunihiko Sugawa – 須川邦彦

Kunihiko Sugawa has worked in the marine industry and participated in the Russo-Japanese War as well as World War I. He has written several books, including 無人島に生きる十六人, which I read but did not really like.

Yoru Sumino – 住野よる

(TBR)

Toru Takamura – 高村透

(DNF)

Mizuki Tsujimura – 辻村深月

(on my TBR)

Yoshio Tsujiyama – 辻山良雄

(DNF)

Nanami Wakatake – 若竹七海

(on my TBR)

Nanami Wakatake has written several mystery novels (series and non-series). I plan on reading the whole Akira Hamura series (葉村晶シリーズ).

Pon Watanabe – わたなべぽん

Pon Watanabe is an author of autobiographical manga about loving oneself and accepting oneself as one is. She wrote about losing weight, tidying one’s house or changing one’s consumption habits. She is one of my favourite authors, I loved all her manga so far.

Soki Watanabe – 渡辺惣樹

(TBR)

Risa Wataya – 綿矢りさ

To me, Risa Wataya is a bit like Haruki Murakami: an author whom everyone else seems to love but whose magic just does not work on me. I really want to like Risa Wataya’s books, but I have already read 3 novels and did not really love any of them. I might try one of her early works one day, but I just think that her books are not for me.

Gaku Yakumaru – 薬丸岳

I don’t like Gaku Yakumaru as much as Keigo Higashino, but I enjoyed all the books I have read so far. When it comes to mystery novels, I prefer the detective genre, while Yakumaru’s books seem to be more on the thriller side. Nevertheless, I found the books I read easy to read and engrossing.

Hisashi Yamanaka – 山中恒

Hisashi Yamanaka is an author of children’s books who has written tons of books. I have only read one book and loved it. I would be very interested in reading Yamanaka’s other books, but it looks like a lot of them are out of print.

Arimi Yazaki – 矢崎存美

Honobu Yonezawa – 米澤穂信

Honobu Yonezawa is a prolific author of mystery novels. I feel like his books might be a little more difficult to read than other authors like Keigo Higashino or Gaku Yakumaru, so I avoided them at first. I can now read his books without problem, so I will certainly pick more titles by this author in the future.

Toshio Yoshitaka – 吉高寿男

Miri Yu – 柳美里

Miri Yu has written several novels, essays and theatre plays. Generally speaking, my Japanese level is still too low for me to really enjoy literary fiction, so the only novel I read, 『JR上野駅公園口』, I read it together with the English translation. As much as I wanted to, I did not really like Miri Yu’s novel.

Asako Yuzuki – 柚木麻子

I tried to read 『BUTTER』 by Asako Yuzuki, but it was a DNF for me. The book was good, but the story not engaging enough, maybe. I gave up after 100 pages, maybe I will give it another try one day.

Yuko Yuzuki – 柚月裕子

Among Yuko Yuzuki’s works, I think that the Sadato Sakata series might be the most famous. The series only has 4 books and has been adapted into drama. I plan on reading the whole series, and I will certainly look at Yuzuki’s other books as well.