When Mitsuko’s village is attacked by outlaws and her beloved sister’s husband is murdered, she alone finds the courage to venture into the netherworld to find her sister’s wandering spirit. With the aid of a shape-shifter and other magical creatures from Japanese myths, Mitsuko journeys across a landscape transformed by legend and by her own growing sense of power to become an unwitting hero. “A readable, engagingly semiserious adventure.”-Kirkus Reviews
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Kara Mia Dalkey (born 1953) 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 Institute of Design and Marketing in Los Angeles.
Her works range from The Sword of Sagamore and Steel Rose to Little Sister and The Nightingale. The latter book is part of Terri Windling's Fairy Tale Series.
Her short stories are featured in the Liavek anthologies, Firebirds: An Anthology of Original Fantasy and Science Fiction, and Firebirds Rising. Liavek was a shared-world series edited by Emma Bull and Will Shetterly. Ace Books published Liavek and thus many of the Scribblies' first short stories.
From Kirkus Reviews:
She is also a musician and has gigged extensively on electric bass (which she plays left-handed) and harmony vocals, with such bands as Runestone, the Albany Free Traders , and Nate Bucklin and the Ensemble (in Minnesota) and Relic and Voodoo Blue (in Seattle.) At different times she has also played drums, banjo and acoustic guitar. She is a songwriter, but her total output is low, and consequently no CD or other album is presently in the works.
Searching for the wandering soul of her beloved sister, Mitsuko enlists the aid of a host of supernatural friends in this colorful fantasy, set in 12th-century Japan. As a member of an eminent clan, Mitsuko has spent her first 13 years in a courtly, constricted world. When part of her family is set upon, first by warrior monks who leave her new brother-in-law Yugiri dead and his wife (her sister Amaiko) dazed and numb, then by an ambitious local lord with marriageable sons, Mitsuko finds the courage to flee into the forest--and to accept the company of Goranu, a mischievous, immortal shape-changer. Sure that Amaiko's soul has followed Yugiri's into the land of the dead, she sets out to reclaim it, sped on her way by several Buddhist and Shinto spirits, some kind, some dangerous. Although elaborate courtesies, a round of poetry parties, and stylized conversation slow the beginning, Mitsuko will win readers over with her determination and the forthright way she faces the powers of heaven and hell. Less intense than Katharine Paterson's Of Nightingales That Weep (1974), and even whimsical at times, the story and its tricks, chases, sudden changes of scene, and its large cast of humans and nonhumans, will appeal to fans of Lensey Namioka's samurai tales. The account ends with a poignant, romantic twist: Goranu offers to end his life so he can come back as a mortal and marry her. A readable, engagingly semiserious adventure. (glossary) (Fiction. 11-13) -- Copyright ©1996, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.
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Book Description HMH Books for Young Readers, 1996. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Never used!. Bookseller Inventory # P11015201392X
Book Description HMH Books for Young Readers, 1996. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # M015201392X
Book Description Harcourt Children's Books, 1996. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # DADAX015201392X