Item description for Ring by Koji Suzuki & Glynne Walley...
Overview Journalist Kazayuki Asakawa's investigation into the sudden deaths of four teenagers from heart failure leads to an isolated cabin containing a videotape warning of death in seven days unless certain, now missing, instructions are not followed.
Publishers Description A mysterious videotape warns that the viewer will die in one week unless a certain, unspecified act is performed. Exactly one week after watching the tape, four teenagers die one after another of heart failure.
Asakawa, a hardworking journalist, is intrigued by his niece's inexplicable death. His investigation leads him from a metropolitan tokyo teeming with modern society's fears to a rural Japan--a mountain resort, a volcanic island, and a countryside clinic--haunted by the past. His attempt to solve the tape's mystery before it's too late--for everyone--assumes an increasingly deadly urgency. Ring is a chillingly told horror story, a masterfully suspenseful mystery, and post-modern trip.
The success of Koji Suzuki's novel the Ring has lead to manga, television and film adaptations in Japan, Korea, and the U.S.
"Anyone curious in how the Japanese see themselves will find this book a fascinating, and ultimately highly disturbing, experience." - Publishers Weekly
"From its eerie opening to its chilling conclusion, this novel by the "Stephen King of Asia" will keep readers glued to its pages." - Library Journal
"But Suzuki is plowing a path that nobody else has traveled, as his 'Ring'-virus is born into an all-too vulnerable world. There are so many extremely clever riffs that never made it into either movie that readers aren't likely to notice how wide the road recently traveled is until they catch their breath and manage to look back." - Agony Columns
"Suzuki's ambitious trilogy does succeed, and it's hard not to be impressed with his aplomb in turning a straight supernatural horror mystery around into a piece of pure science fiction." - TIMES
"Suzuki is called the Stephen King of his country, but that's not really accurate; King isn't nearly as adept at creating complex characters, explaining scientific principles or writing the kind of dialogue that might actually be spoken by humans." - Las Vegas Mercury
Koji Suzuki was born in 1957 in Hamamatsu, southwest of Tokyo. He attended Keio University where he majored in French. After graduating he held numerous odd jobs, including a stint as a cram school teacher. Also a self-described jock, he holds a first-class yachting license and crossed the U.S., from Key West to Los Angeles, on his motorcycle.The father of two daughters, Suzuki is a respected authority on childrearing and has written numerous works on the subject. He acquired his expertise when he was a struggling writer and househusband. Suzuki also has translated a children's book into Japanese, The Little Sod Diaries by the crime novelist Simon Brett.In 1990, Suzuki's first full-length work, Paradise won the Japanese Fantasy Novel Award and launched his career as a fiction writer. Ring, written with a baby on his lap, catapulted him to fame, and the multi-million selling sequels Spiral and Loop cemented his reputation as a world-class talent. Often called the "Stephen King of Japan," Suzuki has played a crucial role in establishing mainstream credentials for horror novels in his country. He is based in Tokyo but loves to travel, often in the United States. Birthday is his sixth novel to appear in English.
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Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 1" Width: 8" Height: 5" Weight: 0.75 lbs.
Release Date Apr 25, 2004
ISBN 1932234411 ISBN13 9781932234411
For the most part, I enjoyed this novel. It was quite different from the movie; so much so, that it took me a while to figure out who the protagonist was (as I had seen the movie a few years ago.) So if you are going to buy this book, it's probably best: (1) not to have seen the movie, or (2) (if you have seen the movie) forget about the movie and read this as a stand-alone.
For me, it was cool reading about areas I had lived in when I was in Japan--the Kanagawa Prefecture. The author faithfully describes this area.
Overall, I recommend this book.
Definately not the same as the movie... Jun 6, 2008
I picked this book up due to my interest in the movies. I thought that the storyline was incredibly creepy & had heard that the book plotline was drastically different. It was!
Where the movie decided to focus around a female character, the main character in the books is actually a man. Also interesting is that while the main characters are all sympathetically portrayed in the movie, the book's characters are incredibly flawed (especially one in particular). Things are *just* different enough to make this into a truly interesting read, yet similar enough that people aren't thrown off from the plot.
The only weaknesses is that the book does suffer from translation. There are parts where the writing seems a little clumsy & clunky. Not bad enough to keep you from reading, but awkward enough to notice. Also, some of the "down time" scenes sort of bored me a little. The overall story was good enough to keep me going, but some of it was a little tedious to wade through.
Would I recommend this to a friend? I would, but only if they were book lovers. People who don't read as much may not be as willing to wade through the tedious parts in order to get to the truly thrilling & shocking parts, which would be their loss.
Dumber by the page Feb 13, 2008
I fully agree with the only other reviewer giving this nonsense book 1 star. This book is one thing and one thing only; DUMB. The plot is so stupid I can't even beging describing it. Every conclusion and decision made by the characters comes out of pure illogic thinking, which is always the correct guess. This becomes so annoying you start wondering wether the author actually thought for even a minute about how the plot should develop before starting to write. The twists and turns throughout the book are so absurd it's not even a plot.
Oh yeah, the fact that one of the characters is a rapist which is no big deal for the other character which is otherwise described as a fully normal person makes you wonder what kind of person this Suzuki is..
The first and best of the Ring trilogy. Jan 9, 2008
"Ring" is the first and best of Koji Suzuki's "Ring" trilogy. Unlike the later books, which go down the science-fiction path, "Ring" is a straight horror novel and a very good one at that. Because of the American movie of this title, many people will already be familiar with the plot: a journalist discovers the existence of an evil video tape that kills anyone who has watched it within seven days and with the assistance of a friend, must discover the secret of the video tape before it kills him. However, the plot of the novel is more detailed than that of the movie and the book goes into more detail of its protagonists lives. I found Ryuji, Asakawa's (the journalist) friend to be one of the most fascinating characters I have ever read and thought the book was worth reading just to read about him.
"Ring" is an excellent story, even in spite of what is either a bad translation or flat writing on the part of the author. Don't bother reading its sequels, but definitely give this book a chance.
Viral Videos Dec 30, 2007
I had heard a lot of noise about the movies, especially friends who mentioned that "Ring" from Japan was a scary as hell thing to see. This piqued my curiosity and I decided to read the original books, despite not being a rabid horror fan.
The main character is Kazuyuki Asakawa, a reporter whose niece died some months before of mysterious causes. A series of coincidences lead Asakawa to look into the deaths of 3 other young people, all of whom had a lot in common with the niece, including the time of death. Enlisting various people to help him out, including Ryuji, a disturbing genius figure who enjoys the game, Asakawa unravels the mystery of a video that kills its viewers exactly a week after they see the video.
Like another reviewer, this book did not frighten me, nor did it gross me out. The violence is very low key, unlike a lot of novels in the same genre. The premise it has is where the disturbing nature of the story comes out. The idea that one could watch a video and be dead the week after is one that in itself is an uncomfortable thought. The book also touches on some of the ethical issues of getting others involved, such as Asakawa's conflict over showing Ryuji the video.
The plot is intelligent, well-written, and different enough to ensure it sticks with the reader long after the last page has been read. This story is an interestingly alternative in the genre of horror and makes its mark well. I have certainly been left with the desire to read the other two books in the trilogy, and have high hopes for them. As for "Ring", for any fan of Japanese literature, I would recommend it. I would also recommend it for those who enjoy horror style stories, but not a huge amount of blood and gore.