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The Buried Giant

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Title: The Buried Giant  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Kazuo Ishiguro, The Remains of the Day, Bibliography of King Arthur
Collection: 2015 Novels, Arthurian Literature, British Novels, Faber and Faber Books, Novels by Kazuo Ishiguro
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

The Buried Giant

The Buried Giant
UK first-edition cover
Author Kazuo Ishiguro
Country United Kingdom
Genre Fantasy
Set in Sub-Roman Britain
Media type Hardcover
Pages 352
Preceded by Nocturnes

The Buried Giant is the seventh novel by British writer Kazuo Ishiguro, published in March 2015.[1][2][3]


  • Plot summary 1
  • Reception 2
  • References 3
  • External links 4

Plot summary

Axl and Beatrice are an old Briton couple living in a time when people seem to be unable to perceive the past clearly. Upon remembering once having had a son, they journey to visit him. On the way, they become involved with a mysterious Saxon warrior called Wistan, the old-fashioned knight Gawain, and a Saxon child, Edwin, on the run from a village where he is wanted dead due to the properties of an ogre bite he is mistakenly assumed to have received.

It is eventually revealed that Axl and Sir Gawain once served under King Arthur, a Briton, who won a long and terrible war against the Saxons which culminated in the slaughter of Saxon women and children. In order to prevent the Saxons from seeking revenge and thus keep the peace, Arthur had Merlin cast a spell over the land, using the breath of a dragon to cloud everyone's memory. The travelers reluctantly decide to kill the dragon and lift the spell despite the highly likely outcome of a new war.

Throughout the novel, the moral conflict is mirrored in the troubles of Axl and Beatrice's relationship. On one hand, they feel that remembering their past will make their love truer, on the other, they worry that something in their past will ruin their current positive view of the relationship.

In the final chapter of the novel, upon regaining their memories, a mysterious ferryman, having promised to take both of them to an island, takes Beatrice first. The meaning of this is ambiguous and subject to several interpretations.


The novel received mixed reviews.[4]

James Wood writing for The New Yorker criticized the work saying that "Ishiguro is always breaking his own rules, and fudging limited but conveniently lucid recollections."[5]



  1. ^ Hannah Furness. "Kazuo Ishiguro: My wife thought first draft of The Buried Giant was rubbish". The Telegraph. 4 October 2014.
  2. ^ John Sutherland. " by Kazuo IshiguroThe Buried Giant". The Times. February 21 2015.
  3. ^ Alexandra Alter. "For Kazuo Ishiguro, 'The Buried Giant' Is a Departure". The New York Times. February 19, 2015
  4. ^ Ulin L., David (27 February 2015). "In Ishiguro's 'The Buried Giant,' memory draws a blank". LA Times. Retrieved 11 April 2015. 
  5. ^ Wood, James. "The Uses of Oblivion". Retrieved 21 April 2015. 
  6. ^ Preston, Alex. "The Buried Giant by Kazuo Ishiguro – review: ‘Game of Thrones with a conscience’". Retrieved 31 May 2015. 

External links

  • Official website
  • The Buried Giant at Random House

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