Friday, 24 January 2014

Across the Nightingale Floor


Set in feudal Japan this slightly unconventional fantasy novel written by Lian Hearn is for fans of the genre and the uninitiated alike. Hearn does a beautiful job of depicting the subtle, understated nature of Japanese culture of the time while juxtapositioning the cultures beauty against the inherent cruelty of a world perpetually pitched on the knife’s edge of war.

  The story follows the fate of a young boy set on a road of self discovery and revenge. Clich├ęd, yes, but the measure of a book like this is not in it’s originality but instead in it’s ability to weave believable, and above all, interesting characters through a compelling narrative which Hearn does a little better than most. Surrounding our young protagonist is a small contingent of supporting characters including a wilful young woman, through which the reader feels most keenly the largely patriarchal society of the period.

   If  you are looking for a different kind of fantasy novel or for those that balk at the traditional dungeons and dragons fair, Across the Nightingale Floor might be worth a read.
3.5 /5 stars
- Mike 

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