Rummanah Aasi
   Confessions is Kanae Minato’s debut novel and the winner of Japan’s National Book Award. It has now been translated in English. This book is a spellbinding and jaw dropping read. It offers a fascinating peek into modern Japanese society, and one of the best revenge stories that I have read so far.

Description: After an engagement that ended in tragedy, all Yuko Moriguchi had to live for was her four-year-old child, Manami. Now, after a heartbreaking accident on the grounds of the middle school where she teaches, Yuko has given up and tendered her resignation. But first, she has one last lecture to deliver. She tells a story that will upend everything her students ever thought they knew about two of their peers, and sets in motion a maniacal plot for revenge.

Review: Confessions is a disturbing and mesmerizing psychological thriller that challenges what we think of right vs. wrong, good vs. evil, and law vs. justice. The book begins with an explosive chapter in which Yuko, a single mother and science teacher at the S Middle School announces her departure from the school and begins to tell her students that two students in her class are the murderers of her four year old daughter Manami whose body was found floating at the school's pool. Yuko knows who killed her child, but the punishment of juvenile offenders in Japan is far too lenient for her taste. So she sets a revenge plot in motion that changes the lives of everyone around her. While she never comes out and reveals the names of the student and simply calls them Student X and Student Y, she gives plenty of details describing them so that their classmates knows the real identities.
  The story is revealed through the alternating viewpoints of the class prefect, the two presumed killers, and an overprotective mother of one of the presumed killers. Though the point of view changes in each chapter of the book, I never felt lost. Books with multiple of views can be tricky to read because the readers tends to feel as if they are not able to connect to the story or its characters. In Confessions, however, the transition from one point of view to the next is a smooth transition. Each point of view held importance and sheds a different light on the situation not only inciting a wide range of emotions from the reader, but further building up the suspense.  
 After reading the first chapter of Confessions, I could not put the book down. I read it whenever I had a spare moment. I have become pretty good at figuring out or spotting twists in books early on, but I could never figure out what would happen next with Confessions. I was on the edge of my seat the entire time I read it. If you are looking for a well written, excellent psychological thriller, I highly recommend Confessions. It was one of my favorite books from last year.

Rating: 5 stars

Words of Caution: There some disturbing themes and some language. Recommended for teens and adults.

If you like this book try: The Dinner by Herman Koch, Last Winter We Parted by Fuminori Nakamura
5 Responses
  1. Jenny Says:

    Ooooo this sounds good Rummanah! Like you said, normally multiple POVs can be tricky, but when they're done well I really enjoy them. I need to know what happens now!

  2. I love a good psychological thriller, but more often than not, I am disappointed. This sounds like one I could sink my teeth into, and I like that five star rating. I am going to check my library for it.

  3. Kindlemom Says:

    You definitely have my interest with this, I love a good thriller and one that messes with all your views!

  4. Okay, this sounds interesting! I always get interested when a synopsis promises a character wanting revenge, but usually end up feeling meh about the book. Since you gave this one 5 stars though, I'm going to add it to my wishlist. Thanks for the recommendation, Rummanah!

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