As A Girl In The Japanese Imperial Court Of The S, Mitsuko Is Shielded From Reality But When Her Brother In Law Is Murdered, And Her Family Taken Away By A Warlord, She Summons The Courage To Venture Into The Nether World The Spirit Of Mitsuko S Beloved Sister, Still Devastated By The Loss Of Her Husband, Wanders Between Life And Death In Order To Bring Her Sister Back, Mitsuko, With The Help Of Goranu, A Shape Shifter, Must Battle The Merciless Spirits To The Death Genre historical fiction, Japanese folktale, fantasySummary Mitsuko is the fourth daughter which is the literal translation of a family in the powerful Fujiwara clan in Heian era Japan Mitsuko has an older sister that she adores The family s home in the capital is attacked by some militant monks, so they flee into the country However, they are attacked again on the road and Mitsuko s beloved brother in law is killed, and her older sister s soul has left its temporal shell Mitsuko then commences a journey with the help of a tengu a bird shapeshifter named Goranu, to many otherworldly spheres, both heavenly and hellish, to find her sister s soul and to lay her brother in law s soul to rest Mitsuko finds herself in the process and maybe finds something with Goranu at the end.Response I remember reading this book when I was much younger and really enjoying it Reading it again made me realize just why I loved it so much It s one of those books that sticks with you but you can never remember the title or author, just the feeling of the story and its affect on you I was ecstatic when I found this book again It was fun reading this book, now that I am older, because I understood so much When I was younger, I understood the basic story, however, now I was able to appreciate all the research and detail the author put into it Heian Japan is classical Japan just as Athens was the classical Greece Kara Dalkey portrayed the time period really well, giving great personality to the facts There is also a lot of detail about Buddhism at this time period, which makes all those semesters of TA work for Hist 201 worth it It was neat to see the history and the culture in the form of folktales and myths work side by side in a delightful and thoughtful read. Part of the Non European Fantasy by Women blog series.This is exactly the sort of book I am so, so happy this blog series is introducing me to I am breathless at how much I am loving the books I ve chosen Little Sister, by Kara Dalkey, is no exception.It takes place in medieval Japan, a thoroughly foreign concept to me I know very little about Japanese mythology and history, although this book was enough to make me keenly interested We are introduced to Mitsuko, which translates literally to Little Sister, and for much of the story the name fits her perfectly She hides behind her sleeves like any good young woman being brought up in court, where modesty prevails above all.Quickly, the fortunes of her family take a turn for the worse The spirit of her beloved older sister, who Mitsuko wants to emulate in all things, wanders off after a tragedy, and only a shell of a human remains Mitsuko takes it upon herself to fix this dreadful problem, leading her on an adventure where she makes unlikely friends through her tenacity and desire to set the world right.The first thing I loved about this book was that it introduced me to a Japanese mythological creature called a tengu There are a few different interpretations of what they are, but in this case, the tengu are basically raven men demons You can see a representation of one on Mitsuko s sleeve on the cover art Goranu is one of these creatures, and decides to aid Mitsuko on her quest He is hilarious and irreverent, and I would often burst into giggles when he pulled out a one liner.There is a definite journey of the hero here, and Mitsuko performs admirably She pulls out extraordinary acts of bravery throughout the story, facing down a lot of adventures that would have left me, quite frankly, running for cover At one point in the story she does break down and, no spoilers here it meant so much when it happened I thought, My god, look how far she s come, and I didn t even realize it was happening The story was masterfully pulled together so the character development happened completely naturally It s amazing to me how much punch young adult novels are able to put into so few pages.I cannot tell you how much the ending affected me Seriously, this is a young adult book It s only 200 pages long How attached could I possibly become to these characters But I was, I was I started blubbering at the last page, and typed within moments of finishing Oh my god I just finished this about a minute ago I burst into tears and walked blindly over to my computer to say Yes, yes, take all of the stars This was a great adventure novel that transcends the genre and the ages it was written for It is out of print and so might be a little hard to get a hold of, but if you do ever get a copy, I hope you love it as much as I did. This is my favorite book. GAAAAHAHA THIS WAS SUCH A PRETTY STORY All the poetry and everything omg I was like What even I can t write anything near that wowowowo This was pretty darn amazing story though for Mitsuko So many metaphors though Everything was just pretty omg the names though like Yugiri kept making me think of sushi view spoiler BUT THE ENDING NO WWHY OMG WHAT TO DO WHAT TO DO I KNEW IT JUST AS SOON AS GORANU SAID You are beautiful I FREAKING KNEW IT WHY DOES THIS HAPPEN UROEJFGHDNOEBFJDLKHN I cannot handle this why must he be a tengu a freaking awesome tengu who is freaking immortal THIS IS LIKE MALEC ALL OVER AGAIN UREJHFGENRDOFUJLGHMN must read the next book now yes now is good hide spoiler 3 1 2 stars, I guess Really, imagery and the prose itself is worth than that, but I felt the story wasn t quite up to 4 stars, so I don t know Short, elegant, and entertaining It was very cinematic, and I could see the whole thing unfolding in my head like animation I could totally see this as a Miyazaki film the sweeping visuals and sense of wonder were very similar in style to Miyazaki movies, actually I loved the bizarre imagery of the underworld The prose had that poetic, understated elegance thing going on, purposefully imitating the feel of Heian era poetry the clever humor of it, too.I can t speak as to historical accuracy, since I know little about the era beyond surface details An aside that no one else in the world but me will care about I did find a couple of mentions of incense a bit odd In one, a person is lighting sticks of incense while I could be mistaken, it was my understanding that Japanese joss sticks are a relatively recent creation, and incense of the time would either be neriko kneaded, aged balls of incense or chipped mixtures of woods and spices to be heated over charcoal At another point, a character complains her kimonos stinks of incense but wouldn t that be normal Didn t nobles generally deliberately perfume their robes with incense, and have contraptions specifically for the purpose of hanging them over heating incense I felt like the story would have been better without the last little segment added on at the end it felt off, and left me with a weird sort of feeling Still, it was very well written, and a fun read. I ve recommended this book to so many people all ready It s based in Asia, using the religious beliefs and some of the events that actually happened to tell the story of a young girl in search of her sister s soul I thought it was great well written, well organized, and fun to read It has definitely made it to my favorites list. I LLLLLOOOOOVVVVVEEEEE this book It s a really great book, and I totally recommend it 1 If I hadn t read so much manga and watched so much anime before I discovered this book, I would have loved it certainly as a teenager.I sort of grinned at every time they messed up monogatari as monotagari monotogari It s a fun romp through Heian times of Court Nobles and Oni mythology of Japan, with some Buddhism and Shinto thrown in And it has a thirteen year old girl as the heroine, who reads believable in her world view as a daughter of a noble family Loved all those lovely short poems I didn t count if they were correct haiku syllable length. A very unique genre Japanese historical fantasy mystery novel Lots of cultural and religious beliefs mixed A girl has to venture into the spirit world to try to save her sister.
Kara Mia Dalkey is an American author of young adult fiction and historical fantasy She was born in Los Angeles and has lived in Minneapolis, Pittsburgh, Colorado, and Seattle Much of her fiction is set in the Heian period of Japan.She was married to author John Barnes they divorced in 2001 She is a member of the Pre Joycean Fellowship and of the Scribblies She is a graduate of the Fashion In
- 208 pages
- Little Sister
- Kara Dalkey
- 15 March 2019 Kara Dalkey