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The pillow book
Sei Shônagon
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A classic of Japanese literature. Written at the late X century by a woman of great character and sharp mind, Sei Shonagon, assistant of Sadako empress (976-1001). Sweet but cutting and apparently frivolous, "The pillow book" shows in an intimate way a collection of thoughts and sceneries observed by the author.
Its reading is very enjoyable since it combines personal interests lists with short stories. The anecdotes and detailed descriptions of the everyday life at the late X century Japanese court. The book structure provides the sensation of showing the writer's intimacy, yet the writing is elegant and distant.
This has become one of my favourite books, and I can clearly say that it is one of the most beautiful books I have ever read.