The lady and the monk: four seasons in Kyoto

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Knopf, Sep 24, 1991 - Travel - 337 pages
76 Reviews
When Pico Iyer decided to go to Kyoto and live in a monastery, he did so to learn about Zen Buddhism from the inside, to get to know Kyoto, one of the loveliest old cities in the world, and to find out something about Japanese culture today -- not the world of businessmen and production lines, but the traditional world of changing seasons and the silence of temples, of the images woven through literature, of the lunar Japan that still lives on behind the rising sun of geopolitical power. All this he did. And then he met Sachiko. Vivacious, attractive, thoroughly educated, speaking English enthusiastically if eccentrically, the wife of a Japanese "salaryman" who seldom left the office before 10 P.M., Sachiko was as conversant with tea ceremony and classical Japanese literature as with rock music, Goethe, and Vivaldi. With the lightness of touch that made Video Night in Kathmandu so captivating, Pico Iyer fashions from their relationship a marvelously ironic yet heartfelt book that is at once a portrait of cross-cultural infatuation -- and misunderstanding -- and a delightfully fresh way of seeing both the old Japan and the very new.

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Many interesting insights into Japan... - Goodreads
I love Pico Iyer's travel writing. - Goodreads
beautiful love story. - Goodreads
Beautiful prose portrays some beautiful relationships. - Goodreads
I thoroughly enjoy Iyer's travel writing. - Goodreads
Iyer writes with such insight and perception. - Goodreads

Review: The Lady and the Monk: Four Seasons in Kyoto

User Review  - Mcd0nag - Goodreads

I thoroughly enjoy Iyer's travel writing. He is pretty much up for any experience that will help him understand the culture he is in. While he is respectful of the different people and characteristics ... Read full review

Review: The Lady and the Monk: Four Seasons in Kyoto

User Review  - Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance - Goodreads

Iyer moves to Kyoto, Japan to write. While there, he meets a young Japanese wife and mother, as anxious to practice her English as he was to practice his Japanese. Thus a relationship was born, between the two cultures. Fascinating book. Read full review


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About the author (1991)

Pico Iyer was born in Oxford, England to Indian parents, who immigrated to California in 1957. He received a B.A. and M.A. from Oxford University and a second masters degree from Harvard University. From 1982 to 1985, he was a writer for Time magazine. Following a leave of absence to visit Asia, Iyer wrote Video Nights in Katmandu: And Other Reports from the Not-So-Far East. In 1986 he returned to Time as a contributor. He also contributes regularly to Conde Nast Traveler magazine. Pico Iyer has written several other travel books including The Lady and the Monk: Four Seasons in Kyoto; Falling Off the Map: Some Lonely Places in the World; and Tropical Classical: Essays from Several Directions.

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