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Points and Lines

Ten to sen / 点と線

AuthorSeicho Matsumoto
ISBN 9784334030049
Page Count 215 pages
Size 15.4 x 10.5 cm (HxW)
First Edition January 1970
Category Mystery, Fiction
Publisher Kobunsha
Special Notes
  • A full English translation is available.
  • Sold over 5 million copies.
  • Adapted into a movie and TV drama several times.

Points and Lines

Ten to sen / 点と線

Description

Three people on platform 13 at Tokyo Station—two waitresses working at the Koyuki restaurant and Tetsuo Yasuda, manager of a machine parts store—witness Otoki, who also works at Koyuki, boarding the night express Asakaze with a man from platform 15, which is located across from them. Days later, Otoki and the man, Sayama, are found dead by the seashore in Fukuoka. At first it appears to be an ordinary lovers’ suicide, but Shigetaro Torigai, an experienced detective in charge of the case, suspects something is amiss. The key is a bill from the train dining car which Sayama had on his person. Meanwhile, it turns out that Sayama was involved with corruption among government officials. Investigator Kiichi Mihara, who is handling the corruption case in Tokyo, heads for Fukuoka to find out what happened to Sayama. Then Torigai and Mihara discover that it’s possible to see platform 15 from platform 13 for only four minutes out of a day. Did Yasuda really see the couple by chance? The two investigators begin to suspect Yasuda, who was on platform 13 during those four minutes. But Yasuda has a perfect alibi that he was in Hokkaido at the time of the murder . . .

A masterpiece of intrigue and surprise, Points and Lines is regarded as a pioneer in the mystery novel genre that gave rise to a boom in detective fiction in Japan. It has been made into a movie and a TV drama several times.

About the Author

Seicho Matsumoto松本 清張

Seicho Matsumoto (1909–1992) was one of Japan’s most celebrated mystery novelists. He worked as a waiter and a printer before getting a job designing layouts for the Asahi Shinbun newspaper. When he was 41 his short story Saigo’s Currency was nominated for the Naoki Prize, and in 1953 The Legend of the Kokura Diary won the Akutagawa Prize. His Points and Lines (1958) is now considered a pioneer of the mystery novel genre in Japan and enjoys undiminished popularity today, six decades after it was first published. During his life he wrote over 700 works.

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