While on a business trip to Kobe, Tsuneo Asai receives the news that his wife Eiko has died of a heart attack. Eiko had a heart condition so the news of her death wasn’t totally unexpected. But the circumstances of her demise left Tsuneo, a softly-spoken government bureaucrat, perplexed. How did it come about that his wife—who was shy and withdrawn, and only left their house twice a week to go to haiku meetings—ended up dead in a small shop in a shady Tokyo neighborhood?
When Tsuneo goes to apologize to the boutique owner for the trouble caused by his wife’s death he discovers the villa Tachibana near by, a house known to be a meeting place for secret lovers. As he digs deeper into his wife's recent past, he must eventually conclude that she led a double life...
"A stellar psychological thriller. Readers will agree that Matsumoto (1909–1992) deserves his reputation as Japan’s Georges Simenon." - Publishers Weekly, starred review
"What a pleasant surprise! Considered one of the most important (and prolific) writers of crime fiction in his native Japan, this is only the fourth novel from Seicho Matsumoto to be published in English (and the first to originate from a UK publisher). Well-chosen by Bitter Lemon too, showing another side of Matsumoto’s talent." - Eurocrime
A Quiet Place by Seicho Matsumoto
Bitter Lemon Press 2016