In the opening pages of the action-packed Book One of Lian Hearn's epic Tale of Shikanoko series--all of which will be published in 2016--a future lord is dispossessed of his birthright by a scheming uncle, a mountain sorcerer imbues a mask with the spirit of a great stag for a lost young man, a stubborn father forces his son to give up his wife to his older brother, and a powerful priest meddles in the succession to the Lotus Throne, the child who is the rightful heir to the emperor barely escaping the capital in the arms of his sister. And that is just the beginning.
As destiny weaves its rich tapestry, a compelling drama plays out against a background of wild forests, elegant castles, hidden temples, and savage battlefields. This is the medieval Japan of Lian Hearn's imagination, where animal spirits clash with warriors and children navigate a landscape as serene as it is deadly.
The Tale of Shikanoko, Book One: Emperor of the Eight Islands (April 2016)
The Tale of Shikanoko, Book Two: Autumn Princess, Dragon Child (June 2016)
The Tale of Shikanoko, Book Three: Lord of the Darkwood (August 2016)
The Tale of Shikanoko, Book Four: The Tengu's Game of Go (September 2016)
In this series opener, Hearn (Heaven's Net Is Wide) takes inspiration from Japanese classics to tell a tale of warring clans and unusual magic. There has been friction between the Kakizuki and Miboshi clans for years, and now it is all coming to a head. The emperor's life is failing and each clan supports a different son as his successor. Into these grand events steps the young man Kumayama no Kazumaru, once heir of his clan but now dispossessed by his uncle and left for dead in the Darkwood. He is rescued there by the mountain sorcerer, Shisoku, but also transformed by strange rituals. Now called Shikanoko, "the deer's child," and possessing a magical stag mask, he struggles to direct his fate. Shikanoko is captured, released, instructed, and controlled by a series of lords and wise men, coming ever closer to mastery of his forest power. Eventually, his own destiny becomes entwined with that of the empire. This fast-paced tale of dynastic change intriguingly sets up the remaining three books in the series.
Customer ReviewsSee All
Loved this story. Huge fan of Lians work and thought this was another great story. Can't wait for the next books!