A Riot of Goldfish, Paperback
4 out of 5 (1 rating)


The son of lower-class goldfish sellers falls in love with the beautiful daughter of his rich patron.

After he is sent away to study the science of goldfish breeding, with strict orders to return and make his patron's fortune, he vows to devote his life to producing one ideal, perfect goldfish specimen to reflect his loved-one's beauty.

This poignant and deft tale is published here with another novella by Okamoto, the story of a pauper from Kyoto who teaches himself to be an accomplished chef.

Together, these two novellas show the great Japanese writer at her most precise, fluent and lucid.


  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 112 pages
  • Publisher: Hesperus Press Ltd
  • Publication Date:
  • Category: Classic fiction (pre c 1945)
  • ISBN: 9781843918523



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Two poignant stories exploring frustration, self-worth and trying to make your mark in the world. Set in Japan in the years between the two 20th century world wars, they show a nation caught between the old feudal way of life and the thrusting modernity brought in by the Meiji era. The men are largely frustrated and unsettled by their inability to grasp the opportunities modernity seems to offer them, while the women float serenely above them. An interesting pair of stories.

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