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The year is 1311, in the highest tower of Cloud of Sparrows Castle, a beautiful woman watches from the window as the city is set alight and a mob runs riot destroying everything they can lay their hands on. She begins to write down the events unfolding around her and the secret history of the Okumichi Clan. Six centuries later the lost scrolls fall into the hands of American missionary Emily Gibson, a new arrival at Edo Harbour and racing from her tragic past. Emily quickly finds herself translating the text, caught up in the gripping tale of ancestry, heroism and forbidden love. At the same time Emily is desperately traying to unravel the complexities in her own life as two men fight for her love. As Emily sifts through the fragile scrolls, she begins to see threads of her own life woven into the ancient writings. As past and present collide, a hidden history comes to life, and with it a secret prophecy that has been shrouded for centuries and may now finally be revealed.
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In the year 1311, in the highest tower of Cloud of Sparrows Castle, a beautiful woman sits by the window, watching as enemies gather below and fires spread through the night. As she calmly awaits her fate, she begins to write, carefully setting down on a scroll the secret history of the Okumichi clan...of the gift of prophecy they share and the extraordinary destiny that awaits them.
For six centuries, these remarkable writings lay hidden—until they are uncovered by an American woman, a missionary named Emily Gibson, who arrived in Edo harbor in 1861, in flight from a tragic past. Soon an extraordinary man would enter her life: Lord Genji of the Okumichi clan, a nobleman with a gift of prophecy who must defend his embattled family—and confront forbidden feelings for an outsider in his midst. Emily, too, soon finds herself at a turning point; courted by two westerners, she knows her heart belongs to the one man she cannot have. But Emily has found a mission of her own: translating Genji’s ancestral history, losing herself in an epic tale of heroism and forbidden love.
For here is the story of Lady Shizuka, the beautiful witch-princess who has enchanted Okumichi men for generations...of Genji’s ancestors, Lord Hironobu and Lord Kiyori, and of the terrible betrayals that befell them...and of Genji’s parents: a wastrel father and his child bride whose tragic love has shaped Genji as a leader and as a man. As Emily sifts through the fragile scrolls, she begins to see threads of her own life woven into the ancient writings. And as past and present collide, a hidden history comes to life, and with it a secret prophecy that has been shrouded for centuries, and may now finally be revealed. Takashi Matsuoka’s spellbinding novel is infused with spectacle, intricately woven, magically told. Autumn Bridge is a feast for the senses, a work of truly dazzling storytelling.From the Back Cover:
"Stretching back and forth through the centuries, Matsuoka weaves a timeless tale of intrigue and romance."
"Matsuoka's rich, authoritative storytelling makes this an engrossing read."
"Offers one of the most impressive feats of storytelling to come along in years.... told in all the rich and exotic detail that made [Cloud of Sparrows] such a delight."
--San Francisco Chronicle Books
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Book Description Random House, 2005. Condition: Fair. Shows definite wear, and perhaps considerable marking on inside. Seller Inventory # GRP75098048
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Book Description Arrow Books, London, 2005. 1st printing. 566 pp. Mass market paperback. - Spine creased; page block slightly warped. Paper slightly tanned due to aging. Otherwise in good condition. Clean inside. Seller Inventory # 016319