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Descripción de editorial
After botching a suicide attempt, salaryman Hanio Yamada decides to put his life up for sale in the classifieds section of a Tokyo newspaper. Soon interested parties come calling with increasingly bizarre requests and what follows is a madcap comedy of errors, involving a jealous husband, a drug-addled heiress, poisoned carrots—even a vampire. For someone who just wants to die, Hanio can't seem to catch a break, as he finds himself enmeshed in a continent-wide conspiracy that puts him in the cross hairs of both his own government and a powerful organized-crime syndicate. By turns wildly inventive, darkly comedic, and deeply surreal, in Life for Sale Yukio Mishima stunningly uses satire to explore the same dark themes that preoccupied him throughout his lifetime.
This 1968 pulp novel from Mishima (The Frolic of the Beasts) is a slapstick comedy with a complex moral underpinning, and an intriguing departure from his introspective work. Hanio Yamada, a young, handsome Tokyo copywriter, wakes up in a hospital bed after a botched suicide attempt. His plan was rash, hatched when he was reading the evening newspaper and the letters seemingly turned to cockroaches. After his release from the hospital, the nihilistic Hanio places an advertisement that puts his life up for sale: "use me as you wish." A series of vignettes ensues Hanio is asked to seduce a cheating wife so she will be killed by the mob; he has to resolve a diplomatic imbroglio involving poisoned carrots and murdered spies; he is hired to be nightly feed for a self-styled vampire. He finally lands in the home of a drug-addicted heiress, where he faces the greatest horror of all: domesticity. The novel handles its female characters poorly, using them in a disposable way that feels dated, but Mishima's pungent insights into the challenges of postwar Japanese life are threaded brilliantly throughout. This dark, funny social satire feels like something only Mishima could've written.