Iku Okada

Iku Okada (岡田育) is a Japanese author originally from Tokyo. After working as a magazine and book editor, Iku authored several narrative essays or cultural critiques. Some of them were translated into multiple languages. Based in New York City, Iku keeps writing and also working as a graphic artist.


Becoming Obasan

The seventh and newest narrative essay is about how to become an adult woman with a pro-aging mind.

In Japanese, Obasan means “aunt” or “middle-aged lady,” and this term has been used disrespectfully as “You are worthless because you are not young anymore.” But we all are getting old equally, and becoming ourselves much more than youth days. The middle is the high season, the edgy peak, and the most interesting time of life. So what prevents us women from being mature? This book fights against a society full of ageism and misogyny, and the final aim is to get back this title “Obasan” to ourselves positively.

From The Sarashina Diary (a memoir written in Japan 1000 years ago) to Mad Max Fury Road, this book introduces literature, manga, movies, and more, to re-define the term Obasan. Included a post-talk with Jane Su the columnist.

Shueisha, Japan, 2021
ISBN-13 : 978-4-08-771747-1

We women have been stigmatized for years, but this book will be a big salvation of our title Obasan.

Endorsed by Mariko Yamauchi the novelist

Every Herstory is Double A-sided

The sixth book of narrative essay about every woman’s milestones. The book was designed as double A-sided opening to depict both future and past.

TAC Publishing, Japan, 2020
ISBN-13: 978-4813295211

What I’ve Quit Before 40

The fifth book of narrative essay, about 39 things I quit before turning 40; wearing high-heels everyday, saying sorry too often, or living in my home country Japan. Thrilled to announce my essay book “Quit Before 40” will be translated into Korean and published in South Korea.

Sunmark Publishing, Japan, 2019
ISBN-13: 978-47631376096
나를 둘러싼 모든 것들로부터
마흔에는 홀가분해지고 싶다
Uknow Books, South Korea, 2020
ISBN : 13979-1189279905

Eavesdropping Between Heaven And Hell

The fourth book of narrative essay about “eavesdropping” at eating places –– how do we talk and reveal ourselves while dining. Thrilled to announce “Eavesdropping Between Heaven And Hell” will be translated into Traditional Chinese and published by Willfulpub in Taiwan.

我很高興地宣布我的書 “天國飯與地獄耳:偷聽,揭露我們與惡的距離。鄰桌的故事越罪惡,食物越美味,我們都犯此不疲。” 將被翻譯成繁體中文,並由台灣的任性出版。我們要感謝 翻譯 黃雅慧先生 與 推薦序 李柏青先生 以及所有參與本書的人。

Kino Books, Japan, 2018
ISBN-13: 978-4909689016
Willful Publishers(任性出版), Taiwan, 2020
ISBN : 139789869858939

OKAKIMOCHI –– hedonics and masculinity of Japan

Co-authored book with Hitoshi Nimura and Junko Kaneda.

1st edition : Kadokawa, Japan, 2015
2nd edition : Kadokawa, Japan, 2017
ISBN-13: 978-4040674209

We Didn’t Mean To Get Married

The second book of narrative essay about my marriage without/against romantic love ideology, how to get a new family by our own.

Daiwa Shobo, Japan, 2014
ISBN-13: 978-4479392644

Mine Has Been A Life of Much Margin

The very first book of narrative essay was written about myself, especially teenage days in 1990’s Tokyo. The title was taken from the incipit of “No Longer Human” by Osamu Dazai. He started with the line “Mine has been a life of much shame(=haji)” but I started mine like this; “Some people may say shame on me but I never think so. Being a geek girl, loving to read and write, expressing myself loudly on social media, fighting against bullying and sexual harassment, and booing at patriarchism, are not shame-ful or shame-less. Mine has been a life of much margin(=haji) and I dearly love it.”

1st edition : Shinshokan, Japan, 2014
2nd edition : Bungei Shunju, Japan, 2020
ISBN-13: 978-4-16-791484-4

Iku Okada | 岡田育 | okadaic

Please feel free to contact us directly through   okadaic [at] heikinritsu.com . Inquiries about the books including translation rights will be answered by each of the publishing houses.