吉祥寺の朝日奈くん

数年ぶりになぜかふと「三角形はとっておく」のことをふと思い出し、読んでみました。初めて読んだときはまだ30過ぎだったかな。すごく久しぶりの青春の甘酸っぱい感じに少し照れくさい気持ちになりながらも、清々しい気持ちになりました。

作者の中田永一さんはもともと乙一のペンネームで有名ですね。「ZOO」、「暗いところで待ち合わせ」など、ホラーミステリーというのでしょうか。女性の指や瞳などをモチーフに偏執的なこだわりのある作品もあれば、本作のような青春ものもあり、非常に多彩な作家さんです。

この著者の作品はいずれもミステリー的な伏線に対してオチが非常に分かりやすくお勧めです。よく分からなかったという人はほとんどいないのでは。特に「暗いところでこんにちは」などのオチは本当に衝撃で、予想できないというか、予想させないような展開でこれぞ小説という感じです。一方でホラー作品はとことん暗く、絶望的な話が多いです。単にグロテスクなだけでなく、妙にシンプルで変な表現ですが美しさを感じるホラー作品という印象を受けました。

作品の中で共通しているのが、文章がとことん読みやすいという点です。改めて「吉祥寺の朝日奈くん」を読んでいて感じたのが、効果的にひらがなを多めに使うことで、学生の未成熟な感情をうまく表現しているような気がしました。例えば、「三角形はこわさないでおく」のこの一文。

ほんとうはすこしも理解していなかったが、さっぱりわからないと正直に言うと、「なぜわからないんだ!?」とツトムが怒り出すので、なんとなくわかったふりをしてやりすごした。

全部漢字にすると次のような印象になります。

本当は少しも理解していなかったが、さっぱり分からないと正直に言うと、「何故分からないんだ!?」とツトムが怒り出すので、何となく分かったふりをしてやり過ごした。

全く印象が違いますよね。なんというか、高校生の単純さや純朴さがよく伝わってくる気がしました。ただ、全部ひらがなにしてしまうとさすがに幼稚すぎるのでこの辺の表現は難しいでしょうね。

ちなみに、甘酸っぱい感情に浸りたいときはこの本もおすすめです。

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