Lucie Blackman - tall, blond, 21 years old - stepped out into the vastness of Tokyo in the summer of 2000 and disappeared. The following winter, her dismembered remains were found buried in a seaside cave. The seven months in between had seen a massive search for the missing girl involving Japanese policemen, British private detectives, and Lucie’s desperate but bitterly divided parents. Had Lucie been abducted by a religious cult or snatched by human traffickers? Who was the mysterious man she had gone to meet? And what did her work as a hostess in the notorious Roppongi district of Tokyo really involve?
Richard Lloyd Parry, an award-winning foreign correspondent, followed the case from the beginning. Over the course of a decade, as the rest of the world forgot but the trial dragged on, he traveled to four continents to interview those connected with the story, assiduously followed the court proceedings, and won unique access to the Japanese detectives who investigated the case. Ultimately he earned the respect of the victim’s family and delved deep into the mind and background of the man accused of the crime - Joji Obara, described by the judge as “unprecedented and extremely evil.” The result is a book at once thrilling and revelatory.
Richard Lloyd Parry is the Asia editor and Tokyo bureau chief of the London Times and the author of In the Time of Madness.
©2011, 2012 Richard Lloyd Parry (P)2012 Blackstone Audio, Inc.
“A masterpiece of writing this surely is, but it is more than that - it is a committed, compassionate, courageous act of journalism that changes the way we think. Everyone who has ever loved someone and held that life dear should read this stunning book, and shiver.” (Chris Cleave, number one New York Times best-selling author of Little Bee)
“I opened this book as a skeptic. I am not a lover of true crime…. But Richard Lloyd Parry's remarkable examination of [this] crime, what it revealed about Japanese society and how it unsettled conventional notions of bereavement, elevates his book above the genre. People Who Eat Darkness is a searing exploration of evil and trauma and how both ultimately elude understanding or resolution.… Just as the grief of Blackman’s parents is unassaugeable, Obara and his motives are unknowable. That is the darkness at the heart of this book, one Lloyd Parry conveys with extraordinary effect and emotion.… People Who Eat Darkness is a fascinating mediation that does not pretend to offer pat answers to obscene mysteries.” (New York Times Book Review)
“[A] masterful literary true crime story, which earns its comparisons to Truman Capote's In Cold Blood and Norman Mailer's The Executioner’s Song.… Like the case of Etan Patz, the Lucie Blackman disappearance captured the public imagination. By writing about it in such culturally informed detail, Parry subtly encourages an understanding that goes past the headlines. It is a dark, unforgettable ride.” (Los Angeles Times)
Fact based book which was gripping, sad (because it was true) and a solid story about the dealings of life. I would recommend this book to anyone who likes true fiction (crime or mystery) but a book which allows us to reflect and analyze life.
If you like true crime, you will love this well-written book. The murders occurred in Japan. The author explores the psychology of Japanese culture as well as that of the murderer himself. I recommend this book.
Probably not from this author, but Simon Vance is as good as always.
His accent is appealing and he always does a good job as narrator.
The story starts with Lucy disappearing, and then... nothing happens. Its more than halfway through the book before anything related to her disappearance starts to happen. I was not interested in the detailed back story of Lucy, her family, her boyfriend, her BFF and other people in the story. I also would have preferred if the story were chronological, instead of being told in chunks that go back and forth in time.
Saving the world, one person at a time, starting with me.
I would listen and will be listening to this story again. It is a great read, besides being a fascinating look inside a culture that is hardly ever exposed to us in the states.
The blood money.
Loved Simon's read.
Who are the people who eat darkness?
"Oooh, a chilling premise. Let's find out what happened to these missing girls! Creepy! Who did this? Are they satanic? Are they... oh, I'm getting bored. yawn. Wait, what just happened? Better rewind... Oh, okay, this is getting better... Ooooh no way! Wow this is getting good!... Oh. Actually, that's kind of a letdown.... Well, I saw that coming. Should I just stop listening? No, i really want to see what happens. What should I have for dinner? ..."
-My brain while listening to this book
Do you really need to know about Jane's childhood or Japan's once upon an empire subjugation of Korea? By the end, you realize yes, definitely. It works. Like Joji Obara, I didn't want it to end.
In what could have been an interesting book on a tragic murder is not-well told and then goes downhill. The latter portion of the book becomes a narrative by the writer who defends himself about claims made by others regarding his reporting accuracy. I would never read nor listen to anything by this guy again. The narrator, as well as any reader, deserved better on this one.
The chief failing of People Who Eat Darkness isn't that it's a bad book, it's just not very interesting true crime. For all the interesting facts of the investigation, victim and killer, the books feels more like it is about the negative relationship between Lucie Blackman's parents Tim and Jane and a (sort of) examination of how the way the Japanese view sex and law differently from the U.K. - except because it is written by a British expat living in Tokyo, it's an outside view and not a very compelling one. I would say less than two hours of this very long read applies to what fans of true crime probably want to read.
The research and backstory for this book is very good. You are drawn into feeling the pain that these women and their families were subjected to. My complaint would be the writing style and there are large parts of the book that are not needed.
Report Inappropriate Content