Honobu Yonezawa (米澤 穂信 Yonezawa Honobu, born 1978) is a Japanese mystery fiction writer, mostly known for the Classic Literature Club series.
Honobu Yonezawa was born in Takayama, Gifu Prefecture, Japan. He was attending local Hida High School, and later continued his education in Kanazawa University. He successfully graduated from it receiving a degree in Literature.
Yonezawa's interest in writing began at a young age. At age 11, he wrote a derivative work which served as a sequel to H.G. Wells The War of the Worlds, and began writing original works upon reaching second year of middle school. On his second year as a Literature student in Kanazawa University, he opened a website called Pandreamium (汎夢殿 Hanmuden, lit. "All-Dreams Mansion") where he published his works. (Later Yonezawa closed it down before his official debut as a writer, causing his published works in the site to become inaccessible to the public.)
Although Yonezawa had written many kinds of works during his career, his writing interests shifted towards mystery fiction genre only after he read works of Kaoru Kitamura named "Sora Tobu Uma" ("The Horse Flying in the Sky") and "Roku no Miya no Himegimi" ("Maidens of the Six Temples").
After graduating from university, in an effort to improve his writing skills within the two following years, he moved to Kouzan city (now – Sera) in Hiroshima Prefecture and worked as a bookstore employee as he continued writing. In 2001, his novel Hyouka won the Encouragement Award in the 5th Kadokawa School Novel Prize in the Young Adult Mystery and Horror category, thus marking his debut. Hyouka was first published in Pandreamium and was well received by among his works, making it his entry of choice for the competition. Hyouka and its sequel volume The Credit Roll of the Fool were later published in Kadokawa Sneaker Bunko's then newly established Sneaker Mystery Club.
Despite having finished the third volume The Kudryavka Sequence of a series later called Koten-bu series, he also began working on a new series entitled Sayonara Yousei ("Farewell Fairy"), which was found difficult to categorize under a publishing label. It was only through the recommendation of mystery fiction writer Kiyoshi Kasai that these series were published by Tokyo Sogensha, which specializes on publishing mystery novels. Later, Yonezawa used Yugoslavia as an inspiration for the fictional setting his graduation thesis work. This standalone work would eventually be featured in the 2005 Kono Mystery ga Sugoi! novel, further increasing his fame. On that same year, Yonezawa published Shunki Gentei Ichigo Taruto Jiken (The Case of the Springtime-Only Strawberry Tart"), the first volume of the Lower Middle Class series which also shared the theme of everyday mystery solving with the Koten-bu series.
In 2012, the Koten-bu series were adapted into the Hyouka, a 22-episode anime series by Kyoto Animation, and even Yonezawa himself became a fan of the adaptation. In 2013, Yonezawa was chosen to become part of the screening committee for Mysteries! Shinjinjou award.
In 2016, the Japanese version of the largest literature magazine in the English-speaking world, Granta, nominated Yonezawa for the award of Best of Young Japanese Novelists.
Classic Literature Club series
- Hyouka, 2001
- The Credit Roll of the Fool, 2002
- The Kudryavka Sequence, 2005
- The Doll that Took a Detour, 2007
- The Approximation of the Distance of Two, 2010
- Even Though I'm Told I Now Have Wings, 2016
- Shunki Gentei Ichigo Taruto Jiken (春期限定いちごタルト事件), 2004
- Kaki Gentei Toropikaru Pafe Jiken (夏期限定トロピカルパフェ事件), 2006
- Shuuki Gentei Kuri Kinton Jiken (秋期限定栗きんとん事件), 2009
- Ou to Saakasu (王とサーカス), 2015
- Shinjitsu no 10 meetoru temae (真実の10メートル手前), 2015
Other mystery novels
- Sayonara Yousei (さよなら妖精), 2004
- Inu wa Doko da (犬はどこだ), 2005
- Botorunekku [Bottleneck] (ボトルネック), 2006 (A Partial Translation of Bottleneck at Tufts Digital Library)
- Inshite Miru (インシテミル), 2007
- Hakanai Hitsuji tachi no Shukuen (儚い羊たちの祝宴), 2008
- Tsuisou Godanshō (追想五断章), 2009
- Oreta Ryuukotsu (折れた竜骨), 2010
- Rikaushiburu [Recursible] (リカーシブル), 2013
- Mangan (満願), 2014
- Hon to Kagi no Kisetsu (本と鍵の季節), 2018
- I no Higeki (Iの悲劇), 2019
- The Incite Mill (インシテミル#映画 インシテミル：7日間のデス・ゲーム Inshite Miru: 7-kakan no Desu Gemu), 2010
- Hyouka: Forbidden Secrets, 2017
- Kaitou X kara no Chousenjou (怪盗Xからの挑戦状), 2011
- Mangan (満願), 2018
TV anime series
- Hyouka, 2012
- Shunki Gentei Ichigo Taruto Jiken (春期限定イチゴタルト事件), 2007
- Kaki Gentei Toropikaru Pafe Jiken (夏期限定トロピカルパフェ事件), 2010–2011
- Hyouka, 2012–
- Do you love me?, 2010
- Oreta Ryuukotsu (折れた竜骨), 2015
Awards and Nominations
- "Kokoroatari no Aru Mono wa" (心あたりのある者は, lit. "Anyone Who Knows")
- Inshite Miru (インシテミル, lit. "Try Indulging")
- Tsuisou Godanshou (追想五断章, lit. "Five morceaux of Reminiscence") (novel)
- Oreta Ryuukotsu (折れた竜骨, lit. "Broken Keel") (novel)
- Mangan (満願)
- Ou to Saakasu (王とサーカス, lit. "King and Circus")
- 2016 - 6th for Japan Booksellers' Award
- Classic Literature Club series
- 2020 - Nomination for 5th Yoshikawa Books Award (吉川英治文庫賞)
- "Honobu Yonezawa, Books from Japan". J-Lit Center.
- "60th (2007) Mystery Writers of Japan Award nominees" (in Japanese). Mystery Writers of Japan, Inc. Archived from the original on 13 November 2013.
- J'Lit | Publications : The Incite Mill | Books from Japan
- "8th (2008) Honkaku Mystery Award" (in Japanese). Honkaku Mystery Writers Club of Japan.
- "63rd (2010) Mystery Writers of Japan Award nominees" (in Japanese). Mystery Writers of Japan, Inc. Archived from the original on 13 November 2013.
- "10th (2010) Honkaku Mystery Award" (in Japanese). Honkaku Mystery Writers Club of Japan.
- J'Lit | Publications : Broken Keel | Books from Japan
- "News & Topics" (in Japanese). Mystery Writers of Japan, Inc. Archived from the original on 13 November 2013.
- 2012 Honkaku Mystery Best 10 (in Japanese). Hara Shobo. December 2011. ISBN 978-4-562-04754-3.
- "11th (2011) Honkaku Mystery Award" (in Japanese). Honkaku Mystery Writers Club of Japan.
- "24th (2011) Yamamoto Shuugorou Prize" (in Japanese). Shinchosha Publishing.
- Official website (in Japanese)
- Honobu Yonezawa (@honobu_yonezawa) on Twitter (in Japanese)
- Honobu Yonezawa on Wikipedia
- Honobu Yonezawa on MyAnimeList
- Honobu Yonezawa on Anime News Network
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