The Sound of the Mountain

by Yasunari Kawabata. Knopf. 86.95. Translated by Edward G. Siedensticker. A quiet, melancholy novel by the Japanese Nobel Prize winner. The tale describes the troubles of a businessman who feels old age crowding in on him and sees his children misbehaving in unspectacular but depressing ways. The author creates a remarkable degree of interest in, and sympathy for, Shingo with remarkably simple materials.