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Japan's harmonious contradictions

Since Mr Iyer is a consummate craftsman who understands that he is writing a beginner's guide, he doesn't allow his book to become heavy with elucidations of the many omnipresent principles of Japan

Partha Basu 

Even before you’ve gone through much of Pico Iyer’s book, you will realise two of its essentials. First, it’s easy on the eye and, second, it’s challenging.

The book moves forward with quick snapshots of Japan the nation and of the Japanese people with no discernable narrative arrangement, each click individually relevant — much like those black-on-white, thin-brushed Japanese postcards stacked and then dealt out for you — but each digging deeply into the Japanese psyche and ethos, locking you in until the next card. Ironically, the process parallels Mr ...

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First Published: Thu, November 21 2019. 00:47 IST
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