Six Four avoids every crime-fiction cliché. The reward is a gripping novel . . . Complex, ingenious and engrossing . . . Yokoyama possesses that elusive trait of a first-rate novelist: the ability to grab readers' interest and never let go.
Already a bestseller in Japan and the U.K., this cinematic crime novel suffused with fascinating cultural details follows a police department reinvestigating a chilling kidnapping that stumped them 14 years earlier.
Yokoyama's novel is a Jenga tower, each plot point and peripheral character part of an intricate balance . . . What is perhaps most striking about Six Four is the number of stories it contains. It probes the cruelty, pettiness and endless face-saving and ass-covering that come with bureaucratic infighting, as well as the anguished obsession that plagues the bereaved . . . a demanding and absorbing book.
Though it deploys common tropes of crime fiction and its lightly noir style, Six Four's unusual focus on the PR side of police work sets it apart and gives it unexpected heat. Yokoyama avoids simplistic moralizing, and instead offers the reader a compelling interrogation of duty.
Hideo Yokoyama's Six Four, translated by Jonathan Lloyd-Davies, is by no means just another mystery novel . . . thoroughly believable and compelling. This is a major book, one that will stay in your mind well after you have turned the last page.
Extremely detailed style and carefully wrought characters. Six Four succeeds on several levels: as a police procedural, an incisive character study, and a cold-case mystery.
[Six Four] takes leisurely twists into the well-kept offices of Japan's elite while providing a kind of informal sociological treatise on crime and punishment in Japanese society, to say nothing of an inside view of the police and their testy relationship with the media. Elaborate, but worth the effort. Think Jo Nesbø by way of Haruki Murakami, and with a most satisfying payoff.
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.
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.
A huge hit in Japan and it's easy to see why . . . steadily gathers menace and power until it becomes addictive.
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.
An astonishing book, poetically translated, containing one of the most complex central characters in crime fiction. Sometimes publishing sensations exceed expectations; Six Four deserves its success - past, present and future.
Six Four gives back in abundance everything that the reader is prepared to give . . . demonstrating that crime fiction can be freighted with the weight and authority of serious literature.
Avoids every crime-fiction cliché . . . complex, ingenious and engrossing . . . If not a bow, you will at least want to give Hideo Yokoyama a tip of your hat for writing such a highly entertaining book.
This novel is a real, out-of-the-blue original. I've never read anything like it . . . He's a master.
Absorbing . . . Six Four is an intensely complicated work, fleshed out by dozens of well-sketched characters, filled with changing perceptions and surprising twists . . . Its rewards are commensurate: unexpected revelations and quiet instances of human connection.