What is Kinsou no Vermeil Gogo?

Kinsou no Vermeil Gogo, also known as “The Melancholy of Vermeil Afternoon,” is a popular Japanese novel written by Mariko Koike. The story revolves around a girl named Yumeko who works at a nightclub called Vermeil. The novel was first published in Japan in 1983 and has since become a beloved classic in Japanese literature.

The Background and History of Kinsou no Vermeil Gogo

Kinsou no Vermeil Gogo was first published in Japan in 1983 and quickly gained popularity for its unique storytelling and exploration of themes. The novel was written by Mariko Koike, a renowned Japanese author, who has won several literary awards throughout her career.

The title, “Kinsou no Vermeil Gogo,” roughly translates to “The Melancholy of Vermeil Afternoon.” The novel takes place in Tokyo during the 1960s, a time when Japan was undergoing significant social and economic changes. The post-war era had brought with it new opportunities for women and increased Western influence, leading to a shift in cultural norms and values.

Plot Summary

The novel takes place in Tokyo during the 1960s and follows the life of Yumeko, a young woman who works at a nightclub called Vermeil. Yumeko is a complex character who is both strong-willed and vulnerable. She has a troubled past and is haunted by memories of her childhood. Despite her difficult past, Yumeko remains optimistic and works hard to make a better life for herself.

Yumeko’s life at Vermeil is filled with drama and excitement. She meets a variety of interesting characters, including the club’s owner, a young pianist, and a wealthy businessman. The deeper Yumeko delves into the nightclub scene, the more she realizes the people she meets are deceptive. Yumeko’s world takes a grim twist as she uncovers the dark truth about those around her and their perilous nightlife.

Analysis and Reception

Kinsou no Vermeil Gogo has received critical acclaim in Japan and has been praised for its unique storytelling and character development. The novel has been adapted into a manga series and a live-action film, further solidifying its popularity.

The novel explores themes of identity, memory, and the human condition. Yumeko’s character is particularly compelling, as she is a complex and nuanced representation of a woman trying to make her way in the world. The novel also sheds light on the dark underbelly of Tokyo’s nightlife scene and the dangers that lurk there.


Q: Is Kinsou no Vermeil Gogo available in English?

A: Yes, the novel has been translated into English and is available for purchase on Amazon and other online retailers.

Q: What age group is the novel suitable for?

A: The novel is intended for adult audiences due to its mature themes and content.

Q: Is it a standalone novel or part of a series?

A: It’s a standalone novel.


Kinsou no Vermeil Gogo is a timeless classic in Japanese literature that continues to captivate readers around the world. Its unique storytelling, complex characters, and exploration of themes make it a must-read for anyone interested in Japanese literature or the human condition. If you’re looking for a thought-provoking and engaging read, Kinsou no Vermeil Gogo should be at the top of your list.