Initial Response

Rinjo / 臨場

AuthorHideo Yokoyama
ISBN 9784334743031
Page Count 354 pages
Size 15.4 x 10.5 cm (HxW)
First Edition April 2004
Category Crime novel, Fiction
Publisher Kobunsha
Foreign Sales
  • Korean,
  • Simplified Chinese,
KoreanRH Korea
Simplified ChineseYilin Press
Special Notes
  • A partial English translation is available.
  • Sold over 630,000 copies.
  • Made into a TV series in 2009-2010 and cinematized in 2012.
  • 9th place, The Best Japanese Crime Fiction of the Year Award 2005.

Initial Response

Rinjo / 臨場


A novel in eight short stories featuring coroner Yoshio Kuraishi as the protagonist, written by the author of 64 (Six-Four), which was nominated for the 2016 CWA International Dagger award.

At 52, Kuraishi has earned a legendary reputation as the “life-term coroner.” He has a knack for picking up on evidence that other investigators overlook, and his calm and careful analysis of the scene invariably yields up the key to solving the crime. Though a heavy drinker and an inveterate playboy, he is held in high regard by his colleagues, and numerous junior officers have sought to be taken under his wing.

Among them is Kazuyuki Ichinose. He has been working under Kuraishi for two years now, and the meticulous case notes he keeps in order to enhance his skills fill some 20 notebooks. In the volume’s first story, Ichinose accompanies Kuraishi to the scene of a hanging, and is astonished to discover that the victim is Yukari Aizawa, a former lover. Circumstances appear to indicate it was a suicide. In a state of shock at the death of a woman with whom he had spent many a blissful night, Ichinose is reluctant to press the investigation for fear that his illicit affair might be revealed—or worse, that he might actually fall under suspicion of foul play. Immediately sensing Ichinose’s reluctance, Kuraishi examines the scene more carefully and quickly concludes that it was not suicide but murder . . .

Helped by the highly distinctive characters populating each of the stories, the collection became a bestseller, with more than 630,000 copies sold to date. In 2009 a television series based on the book also became a hit, leading to a second series in 2010. Toei released a big-screen adaptation in 2012.

About the Author

Hideo Yokoyama横山 秀夫

Hideo Yokoyama (1957–) worked as an investigative reporter with a regional newspaper north of Tokyo for 12 years before striking out on his own as a fiction writer. He made his literary debut in 1998 when his collection of police stories Kage no kisetsu (Season of Shadows) won the Matsumoto Seicho Prize; the volume was also short-listed for the Naoki Prize. In 2000 his story Doki (Motive) was awarded the Mystery Writers of Japan Award for Short Stories. His 2002 novel Han’ochi (Half Solved) earned a Konomys No. 1 and gained him a place among Japan’s best-selling authors. He repeated his Konomys No. 1 ranking in 2013 with 64 Rokuyon (64: Six-Four), his first novel in seven years. Other prominent works include his 2003 Kuraimazu hai (Climber’s High), centering on the crash of JAL Flight 123 that he covered as a reporter in 1985; the World War II novel Deguchi no nai umi (Seas with No Exit, 2004); and the police novel Shindo zero (Seismic Intensity Zero, 2005).

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