Last Winter We Parted - Fuminori Nakamura

Original Title: 去年の冬、きみと別れ (Kyonen no Fuyu, Kimi to Wakare)


A young writer visits a convicted murderer/photographer on death row, willing to write a book about him. At first convinced about his guilt, he soon finds that not everything is as it seems in this world of photography. Did he really set those girls on fire?


I haven't read a great deal of Japanese books, but the ones I read all seem to have some kind of 'strange' fascination with death. Last Winter We Parted was no exception to my experience, but with a synopsis like that I hadn't really expected anything else.


I took me some time to get into the story. In the beginning I found it hard to distinguish between the different characters and the flashbacks/letters. I was thinking 'This is a completely different book from what I expected to read'. But at a certain point it became almost impossible for me to put down the book, as the plot (that might not be very plausible at all times, but it didn't bother me this time) unravels I just had to know how things would end.


Was it a 'perfect murder', a 'murder for art', an accidence or are things not as black-and-white like that? A fascinating story which could've had a somewhat better execution in my opinion, but still it made me want to check out some other books by Fuminori Nakamura...


Thanks to the publisher and Netgalley for providing me with a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.