Miyuki Miyabe was born in the downtown Kt Ward of Tokyo on December 23, 1960. She graduated from the Sumigadawa High School and started to write fiction in 1983 while working for a law office. In 1984, Miyabe took creative writing courses offered by the Japanese publishing house Kodansha, whose subsidiary, Kodansha International, publishes much of Japanese literature in English translation and is committed to disseminating Japanese culture in the English-speaking world. Her breakthrough was the short story “Warera ga rinjin no hanzai” (1987; we are the crimes of a neighbor). Soon after, she quit her job at the law office to focus on her writing.
In 1992, Miyabe published the acclaimed crime novel Kasha, which won her the prestigious Yamamoto Shgor Prize. This success persuaded Kodansha International to commission an English translation that was published as Miyabe’s first work in English, All She Was Worth, in 1996. Her story of two different women running afoul of Japanese loan sharks fascinated English readers and established her name among foreign crime writers in the United States.
In Japan in the 1990’s, Miyabe became widely popular for not only her crime fiction but also her many novels in genres as varied as historical fiction, science fiction, young-adult fiction, and social realism. Her novel Riy (1998; the reason) won the Naoki Prize in 1998, considered the top prize for Japanese popular fiction....
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