The Sound of Waves

  • by Yukio Mishima
  • Narrated by Brian Nishii
  • 5 hrs and 0 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Set in a remote fishing village in Japan, The Sound of Waves is a timeless story of first love. A young fisherman is entranced at the sight of the beautiful daughter of the wealthiest man in the village. They fall in love, but must then endure the calumny and gossip of the villagers.

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What the Critics Say

"A story that is both happy and a work of art...Altogether a joyous and lovely thing. (The New York Times)
"Of such classic design its action might take place at any point across a thousand years." (San Francisco Chronicle)
"Mishima is like Stendhal in his precise psychological analyses, like Dostoevsky in his explorations of darkly destructive personalities." (Christian Science Monitor)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Through That Perilous Night

I'm more and more impressed with Mishima. The two works I've now had the pleasure to acquaint with, "The Sailor Who Fell From Grace with" and now this, are singular achievements, Mishima's prose full of power, beauty and life. I'm going to visit the golden pavilion first before embarking on a journey to the sea of fertility. I can't wait.

"The Sound of Waves" is a coming-of-age story, a "Romeo and Juliet" of forbidden love, a social study of a closed island community like Imamura's brilliant epic "Profound Desires of the Gods," a predestined Greek tragedy with the interference of the deus ex machina, and ultimately a very strong statement of Mishima's acute sense for the artful. His descriptions are alive with feeling for that which can be touched and that which can only be dreamed in silence; the characters are formed with broad brushstrokes, and come to life first as if from afar, then more and more in detail. And, it's as if Mishima wanted to show that once in a while, there is love and contentment, and happiness.

It's not easy to write economically and with clarity. It's always easier to wander off a bit on the way instead of going straight ahead. Mishima certainly knows how, and that's what brings such an edge to his writing. This is an author who seems to know what he's saying and why, a rare gift indeed.

And to think I've yet said nothing in praise of Brian Nishii. He's utterly perfect, both here and in "The Sailor". What else is there to say other than that if this man ever recorded any phone book he wished, I'd used one of my credits to listen to it. And I just realized he's recorded Kawabata, too!
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- Antti

A gem

What did you like most about The Sound of Waves?

This is a gentle story of integrity and redemption set in an island community in Japan.


Who was your favorite character and why?

Shinji is a young and dignified character. His loyalty to his love, and hers to him, shows the commitment of two people who live for each other.


What about Brian Nishii’s performance did you like?

The narrator's performance was understated and perfect for the requirements of the novel.


Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

The restraint, dignity and fidelity of the characters shows the courage of the human soul enduring the difficulties of human life and love.


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- mcawood

Book Details

  • Release Date: 22-12-2010
  • Publisher: Audible Studios