A Dog's Body
Author: Rieko Matsuura
Specifications: ISBN  978-4022645647
344 pages
9.4 x 15.0 cm / 3.8 x 6.0 in (WxH)
Category: Fiction
Publisher: Asahi Shimbun Publications Inc.
Tokyo, 2007
Awards: Yomiuri Prize for Literature, 2007
Volumes: Vol.1-2
Print logo
Volume Titles ISBN Pages Year
1 Part 1 978-4022645647 344 2010
2 Part 2 978-4022645654 304 2010
Buy now: amazon.co.jp


Here's a novel that hinges on the outrageous idea of a woman turning to a dog outside, while staying human inside. Thirty-year-old Fusae, an editor of a regional city ad paper, adores dogs so much she honestly wishes she could be one and claims to be suffering from not gender, but species identity disorder. One day, a Mephistophelean bar owner offers her a deal: "I'll turn you into a dog, but once your canine existence is up, your soul is mine." Fusae assents and is given a new life as Fusa, the pet dog of an acquaintance a year younger than herself: Azusa Tamaishi, a ceramist and daughter of a prominent local family. Although perturbed and abashed to find she has been morphed into a he, Fusa finds happiness lavishing devotion on Azusa, whom Fusae had always liked too. Then Fusa makes the shocking discovery that Azusa is enduring sustained sexual abuse from her brother Akira, who is married with a family of his own. Fusa strikes back at Akira by purposely vomiting on him among other things, but to little effect?until someone identified as Azusa puts up an Internet blog exposing Akira's crime and bringing ruin to the Tamaishi family. Fusa dies fighting Akira, while Azusa kills Akira in the heat of the moment and is sentenced to prison. Three and a half years later, Azusa is greeted upon her release by Fusa, who has been reborn once more. Is it truly possible to communicate without words? That's the question the author explores in this thoughtful thought experiment.

(Vol. 1)  ISBN 978-4022645647, 344pages

(Vol. 2)  ISBN 978-4022645654, 304pages