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The Fires of the Gods (A Sugawara Akitada Mystery)

Parker, I.J

192 ratings by Goodreads
ISBN 10: 0727869892 / ISBN 13: 9780727869890
Published by Severn House Publishers April 2011, 2011
Condition: Fine Hardcover
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Fine in Fine dj, UK First Edition, First Printing Hardcover Protected in clear Mylar cover. Bubble wrapped and shipped in a box. We do not stock or sell ex-library or Book Club editions. Bookseller Inventory # 66709

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Bibliographic Details

Title: The Fires of the Gods (A Sugawara Akitada ...

Publisher: Severn House Publishers April 2011

Publication Date: 2011

Binding: Hardcover

Book Condition:Fine

Dust Jacket Condition: Fine

Edition: 1st Edition

About this title


A Sugawara Akitada Novel - Eleventh-century Japan. Sugawara Akitada’s ailing wife is expecting a child, and when he loses his job and tries to confront the nobleman who is responsible for his dismissal, he ends up suspected of his murder. With no income and a growing family to support, Akitada desperately plunges into the investigation of this crime, aided by his faithful servant Tora, inadvertently placing not only his own life, but also the lives of his wife and child, in grave danger . . .


Parker raises the stakes considerably for her fallible but honorable series sleuth in her excellent eighth mystery set in 11thcentury Japan (after 2010's The Masuda Affair). Ministry of justice senior secretary Sugawara Akitada is already on edge with the impending birth of his second child, having lost his firstborn to illness, when he receives devastating professional news. As a result of interference by controller Kiyowara Kane, Akitada has been demoted to junior secretary, with his incompetent subordinate promoted to his old position. The outraged Akitada seeks an interview with Kane, only to be left waiting in the antechamber without getting an explanation for the slander campaign against him. To make matters worse, he soon comes under suspicion of murder, and he must disobey his superiors to solve the crime himself and clear his name. Parker masterfully blends action and detection while making the attitudes and customs of the period accessible. --Starred Publishers Weekly Review, February 7, 2011

Japan, in the eleventh century. Sugawara Akitada, senior secretary in the Ministry of Justice, is having a bad couple of days. A series of fires is devastating the capital city of Heian-Kyo (much later to be known as Kyoto). On the personal and professional front, some nasty, behind-the-scenes political machinations cause Akitada to be demoted to junior secretary, and an incompetent crawler to be installed in his place. Then, after Akitada goes to the home of the man who orchestrated his demotion, the man is murdered, and, wouldn't you know it, Akitada is accused of the crime. He knows he has the ability to prove his innocence, but he's wading into very dangerous waters, and there's a good chance he might not emerged unscathed. This is another sharply written, imaginative entry in the Akitada series. Parker, like Laura Joh Rowland, author of the Sano Ichiro series (set some 700 years later), is adept at blending historical fact and fiction and at giving the reader an education in Japanese history and culture without making a big deal about it. --Booklist, March 1, 2011

At a time of personal and professional turmoil, an 11th-century sleuth must also clear himself from suspicion of murder. Sugarawa Akitada has steadily risen to the post of senior secretary in the Ministry of Justice in Imperial Japan. Along the way, he's solved seven baffling mysteries (The Masuda Affair, 2010, etc.). Impending fatherhood should make him happy, but his wife Tamako's pregnancy is marred by illness. An especially bad day begins with the noxious smell of smoke and the arrival of Akitada's retainer Tora, who's barely escaped a raging fire with his life. Akitada agrees with Tora's assessment that the fire was probably arson. Later that day at work, matters go from bad to worse. Akitada is forced to chastise Munefusa, a careless employee, and after speaking too frankly to the Minister, Fujiwara Kaneie, is pressed to take a leave of absence that could herald his dismissal. Not even the arrival of whimsical court poet Ono Takamura can lift Akitada's spirits more than temporarily. At home, Akitada's devoted secretary Seimei brings the news that nobelman Kiyowara Kane has been murdered and, amazingly, that Akitada, who had visited Kane the day before, is the prime suspect. While Tora is busy invesitgating the suspicious fire, Akitada feels compelled, perhaps unwisely, to solve the murder himself. First among his own suspects is Ono, who makes no secret of his disdain for the victim or his affection for the widow. A brisk and well-plotted mystery with a cast of regulars who become more fully developed with every episode. --Kirkus Reviews, March 1, 2011

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