Critically acclaimed when first published in Japanese, Shot by Both Sides climbs inside a mind forever wounded by the childhood trauma of war.
An intense stream of consciousness—with loops, flashbacks, and multiple digressions—takes us into the mind of Akaki, a middle-aged Japanese man. Wearing a business suit and overcoat, Akaki stands on a bridge in Tokyo and recalls how he awoke that morning, suddenly overwhelmed with a desire to locate the military greatcoat he was wearing when he first arrived in Tokyo from his hometown in rural Kyushu twenty years before. Memories of the day he has just spent fruitlessly searching for the coat mingle with memories of his lonely, lust-drenched teen years as a poor country boy lost in Tokyo—and with memories from his childhood in northern Korea under Japanese colonial rule, when his dreams of becoming a military hero were lost along with his father in Japan’s defeat.
Shot by Both Sides is a compelling journey into the human spirit, an introspection that hints at madness beneath a thin veneer of sober recollection.