Translation Works
The 1st Selected Works
TITLE
Shadow of a Distant Land
(Shaei harukana kuni)
AUTHOR
Translator
RUSSIAN / Liudmila Ermakova published
Originally Published by:
Asahi Shimbun Publications (1991)
Kodansha (1994) (pb)
KEY POINTS
  • An expert on Spain, the author presents a brilliant mystery story set in historical and contemporary Spain
SYNOPSIS
Could my late mother and the Japanese volunteer soldier be linked by an invisible thread…?
 
A special feature reporter for the Towa news agency known to be an expert on Spain, Jiro Ryumon, goes to a party at the Spanish embassy and runs into Chikako Kabuki, a junior from his university days. Chikako introduces Ryumon to Kunieda, who is teaching Spanish at the language training center of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. A former diplomat, Kunieda was studying at the University of Salamanca in Spain at government expense in 1936, when the uprising led by General Franco spurred a civil war. He tells Ryumon that a Japanese man who called himself Guillermo Sato, whom he met once, had participated in the war as a foreign volunteer. Excited by Kunieda's story, Ryumon flies to Spain to gather information about Sato. As his research grows, Ryumon stumbles upon a big secret.
Rie Hanagata, who Ryumon has once interviewed in connection with work, is studying at the University of Madrid. She learns that a university instructor Iparraguirre is fond of her and is ready with excuses to refuse his invitations. One evening, Iparraguirre becomes impatient and forcefully kisses her. Rie knees him strongly, and at that very moment, Iparraguirre collapses onto the road. There is a knife stuck in his back, and he soon breathes his last. Rie is investigated by the police and learns that Iparraguirre was a member of the ETA, an armed Basque nationalist and separatist organization. She, and later Ryumon, become swept up in a complex series of events.
At the mercy of factors stemming from Spain's history and present situation, how will Rie and Ryumon fare..?
 
GENRE: Mystery
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2018 International Translation Forum on Contemporary Japanese LiteratureJLPP Translation Workshop 2018