Sunday, March 25, 2012

The Street of a Thousand Blossoms - Gail Tsukiyama

My mom has been telling me to read this book for years.  As usual, I should listen to my mother.  I am a big fan of Gail Tsukiyama and have a number of her books unread on my shelves.  I feel like I'm saving them for something, but I know I need to just read them and enjoy!  The Street of a Thousand Blossoms takes place in Japan mostly following the bombings of Hiroshima/Nagasaki during World War II.  The book focuses on orphaned brothers, Hiroshi and Kenji.  While Hiroshi follows his dream of becoming a sumo wrestler, the quieter Kenji gravitates toward the beautiful mask making of the Noh theater.  The story spans decades and follows the brothers through the lives in post-was Japan.  At times, this book was a bit too tragic for my tastes.  It seemed like sadness lurked around every corner - often, I felt, unnecessarily.  But, Tsukiyama tells a wonderful story about a family and brothers who find each other no matter how different their life paths and desires.  Definitely one of the best books I've read this year.

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