Neither thumbs up nor thumbs down for Nip the Buds, Shoot the Kids by Kenzaburo Oe. Literature.
A beautifully written book that is not in the slightest bit enjoyable to read. (Nor, in case you’re wondering, do I feel like a better person for having read it.) Weirdly tame and uncreative juvenile delinquents are marched to a village, to be shortly thereafter abandoned as the villagers flee the plague. Nothing good happens: something so unsurprising that it’s almost boring. Nevertheless, if you like a good dose of grim, I would indeed recommend it just for the lovely clear evocative writing.
“Nonetheless, for aliens captured like wild beasts to be safe before others watching them, it is best to lead the will-less, eyeless existence of a stone, flower or tree: a purely observed existence. My brother, since he persisted in being the eye that watched the villagers, was struck on his cheeks by thick yellowish gobs of spittle rolled on the women’s tongues, and stones thrown by the children. But, smiling, he would wipe his cheeks with his large bird-embroidered pocket facecloth and go on staring in wonderment at the villagers who had insulted him.”
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