Bilingual Japanese Book Review: Powder Pursuit by Higashino Keigo

バイリンガル・レビュー: 雪煙チェース – 東野圭吾

Here is another entry in Higashino’s series about skiing and snowboarding. I also reviewed and posted a short translation of Hakugin Jack, from the same series. This novel features two of the same characters from Hakugin Jack, but it’s not necessary to read the previous novels before reading this one.

This is a murder mystery, but solving the murder is an afterthought to the story of Tatsumi, the prime suspect, fleeing the police as he tries to find the “goddess” who can confirm his alibi. It jumps back and forth from the perspectives of the fleeing second-rate college students to an underrated pawn in the police force and his partner in pursuit. It plays out as both a police procedural, complete with Metropolitan Police Department politics, and a fugitive story.



This is a good book for a learner ready to take the leap into reading novels in Japanese, who isn’t that into foxes or moon princesses. The vocabulary is pretty basic, and there is no slipping into flashbacks, dialog heavily dependent on context, complicated action scene descriptions, or other things that make it challenging to read some novels. Actually, I’m thinking of a specific novel I’ll post about later. Even though Powder Pursuit is a 400+ page book, it didn’t take long to read relative to the other, much shorter, book I have been reading for a while now.

I noticed that Higashino often re-iterates the meaning of events, to make sure the reader doesn’t get lost. I’m confident that even if you miss a few words or the meaning of a few sentences, you won’t lose track of what’s going on in the overall story.

Compressed into an economy seat on a seven hour flight, not wanting to bump into my neighbor’s elbow every five seconds while swapping a bunko novel for a smartphone dictionary, I found this novel to be a great companion.