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Mieko Kawakami

Mieko Kawakami

Mieko Kawakami is the author of the internationally best-selling novel, Breasts and Eggs, a New York Times Notable Book of the Year and one of TIME’s Best 10 Books of 2020. Born in Osaka, Kawakami made her literary debut as a poet in 2006, and published her first novella, My Ego, My Teeth, and the World, in 2007. Her writing is known for its poetic qualities and its insights into the female body, ethical questions, and the dilemmas of modern society. Her books have been translated into many languages and are available all over the world. She has received numerous prestigious literary awards in Japan, including the Akutagawa Prize, the Tanizaki Prize, and the Murasaki Shikibu Prize. Kawakami lives in Tokyo, Japan.

All Mieko Kawakami's books

Upcoming events

Our Spring-Summer 2020 catalog is here!
Download point-of-sale posters for our key titles of 2020.
Out in paperback this spring, two award-winning, international bestsellers by women in translation: Mieko Kawakami’s Breasts and Eggs and Valérie Perrin’sFresh Water for Flowers
Award-winning author Mieko Kawakami says she is happy to “stir things up” in her drive to depict the world as she sees it, as well as the experiences of people who might otherwise go unnoticed.

Latest reviews

  • “Mieko Kawakami’s characters live in a world that is made up almost entirely of women but is decidedly not made for them.”
    — New York Review of Books, Apr 10 2021
  • “Mesmerizing...Kawakami is a master of the interior voice. Her prose is so immediate and pressing it blocks out the future almost as if it were a threatening force. We are forced to deal with her characters as they are living now: alone, vulnerable, and unprotected.”
    — World Literature Today, Apr 1 2021
  • ★ “Raw and vivid...[Kamakami’s] sensitive, evocative storytelling sets her apart as an incredible literary talent.”
    — Booklist (Starred Review), Mar 22 2021
  • “The author of Breasts and Eggs (2020) takes on another subject seldom tapped in literary fiction and blows it open with raw and eloquent intensity...An unexpected classic.”
    — Kirkus Reviews (Starred Review), Mar 3 2021
  • “Kawakami unflinchingly takes the reader through the abyss of depraved, dehumanizing behavior with keen psychological insight, brilliant sensitivity, and compassionate understanding. With this, the author’s star continues to rise.”
    — Publishers Weekly (Starred Review), Feb 12 2021
  • “Kawakami is a writer who doesn’t shy away from hard truths and painful experiences, so this will not be an easy read, but it’s guaranteed to be a rewarding one.”
    — Japan Times (Books to Look Forward to in 2021), Feb 2 2021
  • “With a philosophical edge, Kawakami’s dialogue delves into the definition of power and nature of child friendships. The result is another spine-tinglingly real novel that will weigh heavy on your heart long after its finish.”
    — Osusume Books (Japanese Books You Need to Read in 2021), Jan 3 2021
  • “A sharply observed and heartbreaking portrait of what it means to be a woman, in Japan and beyond.”
    — TIME Magazine, Nov 11 2020
  • “This novel by the bestselling Japanese author paints a striking portrait of contemporary working-class womanhood. Mieko Kawakami expertly juxtaposes the universal but rarely discussed mundanities of being a woman...with moments of unbearable tension.”
    — New Statesman, Sep 16 2020
  • “Your voice is intimate, musical, at times wry and powerfully observant to the inner lives of women and girls. Stylistically, your narrative structure is complex yet subtly woven throughout highly readable prose.”
    — ELLE Magazine, Sep 2 2020
  • Breasts and Eggs addresses the multifaceted nature of what it means to move through the world as a woman.”
    — Ploughshares, Aug 27 2020
  • “Quirky and, at times, suddenly and unexpectedly dark...The first-person narrative and high proportion of dialogue makes the pace snappy and the story easy to read.”
    — The Scotsman, Aug 24 2020
  • “A stunning work of iridescence, changing with the light. For good reason this promises to be one of the most talked-about novels of the year.”
    — Financial Times, Aug 17 2020
  • “The book is so much about the body. If you are craving a novel that really describes a woman’s body so well, just in terms of desire, in terms of longing, in terms of a sense of self, then this is a fantastic novel to read and I highly recommend it.”
    — NPR’s “Pop Culture Happy Hour” podcast, Jul 9 2020
  • “Something of a feminist icon, Kawakami punctuates her novel with humour, irony, and unexpected forays into tragi-comic farce.”
    — The Hindustan Times, Jul 7 2020
  • “[Breasts and Eggs is] not just some elevated piece of literary chick-lit. It’s a novel of humanity, a multifaceted consideration of the fundamental question: What does it mean to exist?”
    — The Japan Times, May 2 2020
  • “In supple and casual prose, this celebrated Japanese novelist follows sisters in Osaka who are considering breast augmentation and sperm donation, causing two generations of women to reckon with the realities of their physical bodies and the pressures put on them by society.”
    — The New York Times Book Review, Apr 30 2020
  • “Fearless in its demand for accountability, transcendent in its honesty, it breathes life into feminist literature.”
    — PopMatters, Apr 29 2020
  • “Complex and multi-layered asking us deep and profound questions about humanity, social rules, procreation, and femininity.”
    — The Fountain, Apr 23 2020
  • “Timeless and thoroughly contemporary, intimate and expansive, Natsuko and her companions encompass extremes in a singular and unforgettable fashion.”
    — The Midwest Book Review, Apr 20 2020


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