Yasunari Kawabata won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1968. I read his book, Thousand Cranes, as my final book for Dolce Bellezza’s Japanese Literature challenge. The writing was indeed beautiful, and I could see why he was a Nobel Prize winning author. However, I found the story to be cold and disturbing, and I can’t say I liked the book very much because of that. When I run into a book I don’t care for, I always worry that it is my “fault.” In this case, especially because the writing was so beautiful, I really stewed about whether I just didn’t understand the culture well enough, or if I was missing something important. But after thinking about it for awhile, I decided that what really bothered me is that this story focused on relationships, and is described as “a story of ill-fated love,” but I saw no evidence of love between any of the characters, past or present. There were tears and anguish, but no love, and that left me feeling chilled to the bone.