Not only is Six Four an addictive read, it is an education about Japan, its police and its society, and simply one of the best crime novels I have ever read.
Crime fiction aficionados constantly search for the next big thing, and this remarkable epic may just fit the bill. It is like nothing you have ever read in the genre, told in a narrative voice that is truly unique.
Epic in ambition, it unfurls like a flower in the spring sunlight, steadily increasing its grip as it does so.
A classic plot about a decent cop painstakingly uncovering corruption suddenly turns into one of the most remarkable revenge dramas in modern detective fiction.
It's very different, in tone, narrative and style, from almost anything out there . . . the twist and the pay-off are worth the wait.
The plot would grip in any language . . . not just a police procedural but a guide book to Japan . . . There's much talk these days of binge viewing; here is a binge read.
Slow building, meticulous in its insistence on unfolding all the procedural elements of a Japanese crime investigation and its political ramifications, this is a novel that insidiously grows on you until you are fully captive of its narrative flow and can't put it down.
A huge hit in Japan and it's easy to see why . . . steadily gathers menace and power until it becomes addictive.
In many ways Six Four is the literary equivalent of a good TV box set such as Danish TV series The Killing. It is totally fascinating, revealing as much about Japan and its people as about the mystery at its heart. Unable to put the book down, I read until 3am every night for a week, the shadows under my eyes growing darker with every hour. But I was rewarded with a shocking conclusion. Six Four is unique, remarkable and deserves to sell at least as well over here as it did in Japan.
[A] well-written epic tale, which reads beautifully in Jonathan Lloyd-Davies's translation. Six Four is far more a monument to the idiosyncrasies of Japanese bureaucratic life than it is a simple detective story.