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Gifted High res ギフテッド.jpg

Original title:



Original language


Publication info:


12 July 2022


120 pages



Literary fiction

Rights handled by New River

Foreign rights outside Asia 

Rights sold:

China (Xiron)

Estonia (Tänapäev)

Germany (S. Fischer)

Italy (Fanucci Editore)

North America (Transit Books)


UK & Comm ex Can (Scribe)


 by Suzumi Suzuki

Shortlisted for the 167th Akutagawa Prize


The narrator left home at the age of 17. Now 25, she works as a hostess in Tokyo's nightlife district. Her estranged mother, who is seriously ill, suddenly turns up at her door, wanting to stay with her to compose one last poem. Her mother used to be a nightclub singer and unsuccessful poet, while raising the narrator by herself. One day, the mother collapses and is taken to the hospital, with the doctor declaring that she only has a few days to live. Caring for her mother, the narrator is also going through the grief of losing her friend Eri, a sex worker who recently took her own life. As the mother approaches the end of her life, how will the mother and the daughter interact? What is the secret behind the burnt marks on the narrator's arm, which she tries to hide with a big tattoo? Who is the mysterious man that visits the mother at her hospital bed? 


Written in elegant prose, Gifted is a brilliant literary debut based on the author's own experience. The novel offers a moving portrayal of a troubled daughter-mother relationship, reminiscent of Avni Doshi's Burnt Sugar and Deborah Levy's Hot Milk, while also being a love letter to Tokyo's 'sleepless town', the entertainment district of Kabukichō. 

About the author


Suzumi Suzuki (1983-) is an acclaimed Japanese sociologist and columnist. She graduated from Keio University majoring Environment and Information Studies, and later received a master's degree from Tokyo University. She worked as an adult video actress before becoming a journalist for Nikkei Inc. Her MA thesis, based on her interviews of adult video actresses, was published as A Sociological Study of AV Actresses (2012). She also published Sell Your Body, and It's Goodbye (2016), Flowers for Love and the Womb (2017), A Prostitute's Bookself (2022), and Letters of Correspondence (2021), co-written with Japan's most acclaimed feminist scholar Chizuko Ueno. Gifted is her debut novel. 

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