The Tengu's Game of Go: The Tale of Shikanoko Book 4

The previous three volumes in Lian Hearn's feudal Japanese epic, The Tale of Shikanoko, served as character study and setup for a conclusion focused on the much-anticipated battle between the series' two opposing forces--warrior and sorcerer Shikanoko of the Kakizuki (the deposed and rightful heirs to the throne) and Lord Aritomo and Masachika of the Miboshi clan (ruling party of the Eight Isles). Twelve years have elapsed since the warrior-sorcerer Shikanoko began his journey to protect and restore Hidden Emperor Yoshimori to the throne. In that time, Shikanoko has betrayed those who have loved and mentored him, raised and abandoned a mystical band of orphan boys, and forsook humankind to mourn in grief over a lost love, hovering in spiritual purgatory with a magical deer mask fused to his face.

Lord of the Darkwood (Book 3) alternated among the viewpoints of the children that Shikanoko abandoned in his grief. In The Tengu's Game of Go, they have matured and are seeking him out, either for revenge in the ongoing power struggle with the Miboshi clan, or with intent to restore his humanity so that he may fulfill his destiny of bringing peace back to the Eight Isles. The novel's climax is the final showdown between the warring clans.

Hearn infuses her narrative with the usual episodes of mysticism, violence, sword and sorcery. More surprising, however, are the brief interludes that provide comic relief to the tragedies that will certainly befall some of the key players. As a result, The Tengu's Game of Go provides a satisfying conclusion to an epic series. --Nancy Powell, freelance writer and technical consultant

Powered by: Xtenit