Review: Ring - Koji Suzuki

Title Ring
Author Koji Suzuki
Pages 392
Year 1991
Reading Time 24 (April & May 2010)
Rating 8 out of 10

This is another book I read after seeing the movie. Having seen both japanese and english movie I never understood the title. In the TV there is a ring in the tape but on the book it does not (well at least they don't talk about it).

After four teens mysteriously die in Tokyo at the same time, Kazuyuki Asakawa a reporter and uncle of one of the deceased he decides to launch is own investigation. That leads to some resort where the teens were last together exactly one week before. There he finds a mysterious videotape and watches it. It's a strange sequence of abstract and realistic footage that ends with an warning... Who watched this tape will die in one week from now. As the tape is saying the only way to survive we got cut off (taped over by an advertisement). This tape affects Asakawa that doesn't doubt that is a warning and true. He then enlists his curious friend Ryuji Takayama (a professor) and a rapist who has no fear and who admits that he would seen the end of the world if he could out of curiosity. He then watches the tape and as Asakawa he too believes in the tape. He then askes Asakawa to copy it so he can study it.

There are some other minor characters such as Shizuka and Yoko (Wife and Daughter of Asakawa) who watch the tape by mistake three days after Asakawa. Mai a friend of Ryuji who appears briefly (I know that the second book this character will appear again).
And of course the antagonist... Sadako Yamamura a she/he hermaphrodite with special powers similar to EPS.

Well there are several and abysmal differences between the movies and the book. I must say that the book is a pseudo-science/medical-mystery approach against the movie who has a supernatural ghost story. Ryuji from the movie is totally different from the book. So different that thinking back I didn't enjoy in the movie. Here it was the most interesting character.... even if he dies in the end.
Well most important of all in the book the main character is a guy and in the movie is a girl.
The "disease/curse" from the book is so different and complicated than the movie that I don't understand the movie producers... Oh well...

Returning to the book we saw them investigate as they travel around the country for clues just for the end to return where it all began. There they find that Sadako was raped and thrown down the well. Both protagonists get the girl from the botton of the well and return her home. Thursday has passed and Asakawa was alived. But on friday his friend die the same way as all other previous victims. Asakawa can't understand why he lived and his friend not. Again the supernatural enters as he asks for his friend assistance... It came to his mind about evolution and diseases... virus... There he has a epiphany and realizes that he surpassed the curse because he made a tape of the Virus therefore he made it's purpose. Since Ryuji didn't shown it to anyone he died. Asakawa understands now what must be done... To his daughter and wife to live they must record two tapes and give to two differerent persons... It's here Asakawa wants her daughter and wife to show to her father and mother... Therefore the title RING... Because to survive you must make a copy and if you go to many lines it becomes a ring... as it happens noawadays with those stupid chain e-mails...

In the end I enjoyed the book and it was different from the movies.. The Japanese version was one of the scariest movies I have ever seen. But to me they are not equal... They have so many differents that I treat them differently. Maybe I will buy and read the second book.. Let us see my disposition.
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