Best Fiction Books to Read: How Do You Live (Genzaburo Yoshino)

Photo Credit: (

How Do You Live is an old Japanese book that was written in 1937 by Genzaburo Yoshino. It has recently become more mainstream after it was announced that legendary filmmaker Hayao Miyazaki (Studio Ghibli) is going to be adapting it into a movie.

The format of How Do You Live is a conversation between an uncle and his nephew (Cooper). Cooper is young and in school, and he is just finding his way through life. Cooper has already gone through a lot of change in his life after his father passed away, and his uncle has stepped up into a father like role.

Throughout How Do You Live, Cooper makes observations about the world, which he then passes on to his uncle. From there, his uncle tries to provide him advice and help lead Cooper through the world. One day though, Cooper encounters a very difficult situation at school that really shakes him up. For once, Cooper doesn’t know how to deal with the situation, and he is afraid to bring up the topic to his uncle. This internal dilemma becomes the main subject of the book.

How Do You Live is a very short book, but I think it was packed with good lessons and stories. It is a very similar type of book to The Alchemist, as both authors use a captivating story to demonstrate life lessons they feel are important. I am planning on reading How Do You Live a second time at some point in the future, as I don’t think I have fully captured everything it is trying to say.

How Do You Live Recommendation Rating: 3.5

1: Something worth checking out if you have time

2: Something that is a hit for some people, but not a must for everyone

3: Something worth prioritizing if interested

4: Something worth making time to check out

5: An absolute home run, worth going out of your way for


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: