Confessions of a Mask tells the story of a Japanese boy growing up in the World War II era. The unnamed protagonist struggles with his homosexuality and grows up isolated and consumed with fantasies of death and sadism. He attempts to create the illusion of normalcy by pursuing a relationship with the sister of the young man he’s attracted to. Ultimately, the protagonist ends this relationship, realizing that he cannot have romantic feelings for a woman, but he remains unsatisfied and unfulfilled.
I read this book a while ago, and didn’t quite have the words to express all that I experienced. Parts of it are quite graphic and shocking, and parts of it are tender and heartbreaking. Overall, the story has stayed with me, and flashes of its contents cross my mind when I least expect it.
So, if you like stories that are fascinating, confronting, thought-provoking – for lack of a better word, interesting, then you should read this one. You won’t be quite the same afterwards – I certainly am not.