13 Delicious Japanese Murder Mysteries For You To Sink Your Teeth Into

Welcome to a world of violence – that of murder, of taking someone’s life. But this time, all the plots are set in towns in Japan. These aren’t just murder mysteries, these are stories that will tell you a little something about Japan, its culture, its people and at the same time, have you sitting on the edge of your seats as the plots thicken, twist and turn and then finally unravel as delicate petals of a newly bloomed flower. Care to join the detectives in these 13 books out of the island nation of Japan to solve perhaps the most fiendish murders? Be prepared for diabolically twisted plots that are full of blind turns!

The Honjin Murders by Seishi Yokomizo

A locked room mystery, with a heinous murder scene, a list of possible suspects, and an eccentric private detective.
On a wedding night in the Ichiyanagi family household, a terrible scream rends the air. The scream is followed by the sound of eerie music – death has come to Okamura, leaving no trace but a bloody samurai sword, thrust into the pristine snow outside the house. The murder seems impossible, but amateur detective Kosuke Kindaichi is determined to get to the bottom of it.
This book is a minefield of clues and hints for anyone who’d love to solve the case. But can you do it before the detective does?

The Inugami Curse by Seishi Yokomizo

At its heart is a family fortune, a family feud and family secrets. And revolving around all these is an explosive, divisive and extremely complex will left by Sahei Inugami, patriarch of the Inugami Clan. The bodies are beginning to pile up. Can Detective Kindaichi solve the mystery and restore peace?

The Village of Eight Graves by Seishi Yokomizo

Nestled deep in the misty mountains is a small village. The village got its name from an ancient legend: In the sixteenth century, eight samurais were murdered by the villagers bringing a terrible curse on the village. Now, a man has arrived into town. Along with him comes death and a murder mystery. Can you guess who the killer is?

The Devil’s Flute Murders by Seishi Yokomizo

A captivating and thrilling locked-room mystery set in post-war Tokyo, the story revolves around the Tsubaki family, a once-noble family, who are mourning the death of the brooding and troubled composer, Viscount Tsubaki. The family hasn’t yet come to terms with the death. Amid this mourning, death visits the house again.

Out by Natsuo Kirino

Natsuo Kirino’s Out is the story of a young mother who works a night shift making boxed lunches. As the story progresses, she ends up strangling her deadbeat husband to death and then seeks the help of her co-workers to dispose of the body and cover up her crime. The complex yet riveting narrative provides a convincing glimpse into the grimy world of Japan’s Yakuza and at the same time portrays the psychology of a violent crime and the ensuing cat-and-mouse chase between seasoned detectives and a group of determined but inexperienced criminals. A classic murder mystery from Japan.

Bullet Train by Kotaro Isaka

This dark, satirical thriller by the bestselling Japanese author, follows the perilous train ride of five highly motivated assassins who each have their own missions. But as things should be, their missions are interconnected at some level or the other and they end up pitting their wits against each other. Bullet Train is a propulsive thriller that fizzes with incredible energy and surprising humor even as the plot unveils double-crosses and complicated twists in the tale. Who will make it off the train alive—and what awaits them at the last stop?

The Lady Killer by Masako Togawa

Ichiro Honda is good-looking. He’s a computer expert who works in Tokyo. He lives in a respectable hotel and visits his wife in Osaka on weekends. But that’s all that’s normal in Honda’s life. His life is dedicated to the conquest of a never-ending succession of young women. Life is good. But then three of Honda’s conquests end up dead and he gets convicted. Can his lawyer, the elderly Kentaro Hatanaka, pull off a miracle and save Honda even though all the proof is stacked against him? A tense book with sharp psychological insights, told in lean, sparsely ornamented style.

The Master Key by Masako Togawa

The K Apartment House for ladies is about to be moved intact in a highly publicized engineering feat in Tokyo. But the plan is all set to bring to fore hidden secrets of a child being buried beneath the building. Will the dead tell tales? The stage is set. The actors are a few of the present-day occupants of the K apartments–single, lovely, obsessed, neurotic–each life a novel in itself, told in a spare, unembellished style that never lapses into the sentimental. Manipulated by hidden strings, their actions and reactions lead to suicide, murder, and some final surprising revelations.

A Death in Tokyo by Keigo Higashino

At the bridge in Nihonbashi district of Tokyo an unusual statue of a Japanese mythic beast – a kirin – stands guard over the district. Late one evening, a patrolman sees a seemingly drunk man collapse under the kirin. But the man’s not drunk, instead he’s dead with a stab wound in the chest. However, where he died was not where the crime was committed – the key to solving the crime is to find out where he was attacked. That same night, a young man named Yashima is injured in a car accident. On him is the dead man’s wallet.

Murder in the Crooked House by Soji Shimada

Built on a snowbound cliff at the remote northern tip of Japan is the Crooked House – a curious place to build a house, but even more curious is the house itself – a maze of sloping floors and strange staircases, full of bloodcurdling masks and uncanny dolls. And then a guest is found dead in seemingly impossible circumstances. The police are unable to solve the puzzle. To add to it, more bizarre deaths follow. The clues are all there. Can you solve the mystery of the murders before renowned sleuth Kiyoshi Mitarai?

The Tokyo Zodiac Murders by Soji Shimada

For 40 years, the mystery has baffled Japan. Now, detective Kiyoshi Mitarai has just one week to solve the mystery: Who murdered the artist Umezawa, raped and killed his daughter, and then chopped up the bodies of six others to create Azoth, the supreme woman? With maps, charts, and other illustrations, this story of magic and illusion, pieces together a tragedy, and challenges the reader to unravel the mystery before the final curtain.

The Decagon House Murders by Yukito Ayatsuji

The lonely, rockbound island of Tsunojima is notorious as the site of a series of bloody unsolved murders. Some even say it’s haunted. One thing’s for sure: it’s the perfect destination for the K-University Mystery Club’s annual trip. And then the deaths begin. The amateur sleuths realise they will need all of their murder-mystery expertise to get off the island alive.
As the party are picked off one by one, the survivors grow desperate and paranoid, turning on each other. Will anyone be able to untangle the murderer’s fiendish plan before it’s too late?

The Tattoo Murder by Akimitsu Takagi

Tokyo, 1947. At the first post-war meeting of the Edo Tattoo Society, Kinue Nomura reveals her full-body snake tattoo to rapturous applause. Days later she is gone. A dismembered corpse is discovered in the locked bathroom of her home, but her much-coveted body art is nowhere to be found. Even as Kinue’s horrified lover joins forces with the detectives, similar deaths follow. Is someone being driven to murder by their lust for tattooed skin, and can they be stopped? One of Japan’s most ingenious and legendary whodunits. Can you solve the mystery of the tattoo murder?

Pick up any or all of the books on bookstores from any Kunzum store or WhatsApp +91.8800200280 to order. Buy the book(s) and the coffee’s on us.

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