Yukio Mishima was born in Tokyo in 1925. He graduated from Tokyo Imperial University's School of Jurisprudence in 1947. His first published book, The Forest in Full Bloom, appeared in 1944 and he established himself as a major author with Confessions of a Mask (1949). From then until his death he continued to publish novels, short stories, and plays each year. His crowning achievement, the Sea of Fertility tetralogy--which contains the novels Spring Snow (1969), Runaway Horses (1969), The Temple of Dawn (1970), and The Decay of the Angel (1971)--is considered one of the definitive works of twentieth-century Japanese fiction. In 1970, at the age of forty-five and the day after completing the last novel in the Fertility series, Mishima committed seppuku (ritual suicide)--a spectacular death that attracted worldwide attention.
"Mishima is a giant. . . . One of the most acclaimed writers of the 20th century. . . . The uniquely askew relationships at the center of the story mean that its most riveting scenes are well and truly riveting; unforgettable, even." --The New York Times Book Review
"A compelling tale of love and violence. . . . Mishima is a magnificent and important storyteller. . . Admirers of the enigmatic Japanese master have reason to rejoice. Those still unfamiliar with his work might very well have a new entryway to one of the most vital--and troubling--literary voices of the 20th century. . . . By the time we reach the end, Mishima's twisty timeline pays huge dividends. A powerful epilogue ties a neat ribbon around the plot." --The Washington Post "[A] little gem." --The Wall Street Journal "[A] luridly propulsive novel. . . . This disturbing book is a masterful look into the 'very instant when the truth of perverse human nature begins to shine.' . . . With Mishima's baroque, beautiful prose hinting at depravity on every page." --Publishers Weekly (starred review) "Classic Mishima terrain. . . . A stimulating read and a welcome addition to the canon of Mishima translations." --The Japan Times "Masterful. . . . A tale of lust, violence and acceptance, the story stands as another example of [Mishima's] genius." --Shelf Awareness "A tragic, haunting work from a master." --The Gazette (Cedar Rapids)