Kanae Minato (Chinese:凑佳苗; pinyin:Ban daijie,湊かなえ, Minato Kanae, born 1973) is a Japanese writer of crime fiction and thriller. She is a member of the Mystery Writers of Japan and the Honkaku Mystery Writers Club of Japan.
She started writing in her thirties. Her first novel Confessions became a bestseller and won the Japanese Booksellers Award.
In youth she was an avid fan of mystery novels of Edogawa Ranpo, Maurice Leblanc, Agatha Christie, Keigo Higashino, Miyuki Miyabe and Yukito Ayatsuji.
She has been described in Japan as "the queen of iyamisu." Iyamisu (eww mystery) is a subgenre of mystery fiction which deals with grisly episodes and the dark side of human nature. Readers blurt out "eww" when they are reading iyamisu novels. The term was created in 2006 by the mystery critic Aoi Shimotsuki. There has been an iyamisu boom in Japan since around 2012. Kanae Minato, Mahokaru Numata and Yukiko Mari are regarded as representatives of the genre in Japan. The back cover blurb of the Japanese edition of Gone Girl, published in June 2013, was "One of the best iyamisu novels from overseas."
The English edition of Minato's Confessions, published in August 2014, was described by a critic as "the Gone Girl of Japan."
Wall Street Journal selected Confessions as one of the 10 best mysteries of 2014.Confessions (original title: Kokuhaku), trans. Stephen Snyder (Mulholland Books, 2014)
2007 – Shosetsu Suiri New Writers Prize: "The Saint" (The first chapter of her novel Confessions)
2009 – Japanese Booksellers Award: Confessions
2012 – Mystery Writers of Japan Award for Best Short Story: "Umi no Hoshi"
2015 – Alex Award: Confessions
2015 – Nominee for Strand Critics Award for Best First Novel: Confessions
2015 – Nominee for Shirley Jackson Award for Best Novel: Confessions
Kita no Kanaria tachi (2012) (Based on her short story Niju nen go no Shukudai (二十年後の宿題))
The Snow White Murder Case (Shirayukihime Satsujin Jiken) (2014)
Night's Tightrope (Shōjo) (2016)
Japanese TV dramas
Penance (2012) (Shokuzai)
Kōkō Nyūshi (2012)
Yakō Kanransha (2013)
Hana no Kusari (2013)
N no Tame ni (2014)