Book Review: In Ghostly Japan by Lafcadio Hearn

 Book Review: In Ghostly Japan by Lafcadio Hearn

I first came to hear of Lafcadio Hearn during my visit at the “Fantasmi e Spiriti del Giappone” exhibition, as the tales depicted in Benjamin Lacombe's book are inspired by Hearn’s stories. Today, I will be sharing my impressions of Hearn's book In Ghostly Japan

*I have received a free ebook copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review, please note that this doesn’t affect my opinion of the book, nor my personal thoughts.

In Ghostly Japan by Lafcadio Hearn - Book Info

In Ghostly Japan is a collection of fourteen stories about the spirits of the dead, and the spirits of the living, offering a captivating—yet ghoulish—window into Japan's supernatural and spiritual world.

I’ve been really eager to read any of his works since then, however, I did not enjoy In Ghostly Japan as much as I thought I would. Personally, I thought the book was more heavily inclined to the spiritual—rather than the supernatural—which I suppose it’s why I had a difficult time getting through some of the stories. I also unfortunately had to skip a couple because I just couldn’t connect with what I was reading at all. A shame, really. 

However, some of the stories were really frightening, and I did enjoy them quite a bit. Furisodé, for example, tells the tale of a haunted kimono (and it reminded me a lot of a Japanese horror film with a very similar story, except it was about a doll), and it was quite eerie. A Passional Karma was indeed petrifying, and Ingwa-Banashi was purely spine-chilling. 

Even though I had a tough time with some of the more spiritual stories, I’m glad I was given the opportunity to read In Ghostly Japan.

Have you read this book or plan to read it? I'd love to hear your thoughts, and if you have a favourite story among them.