I have been quiet for a few days as I have been busy reading, along with my other usual activities. The book I have been engrossed in is Omamori by Richard McGill. This book was written in 1987, the copy I read was lent to me by a neighbour.
Set in Japan, this saga is of two entwined families. For three generations, the Hosokawa-Napier silk works flourishes under the joint ownership of American and Japanese heirs. Threatened by bankruptcy in 1936, Douglas Napier and Baron Hosokawa strike an uneasy, though profitable, deal with Germany to produce war goods that fuel the conflict brewing in Europe. Their enduring partnership is also threatened from within by young Max Napier and the Baron’s daughter, Shizue, star-crossed lovers determined to defy the unbending traditions that separate their worlds.
I really don’t want to give too much away but the story involves many significant events in history and also the stigma attached to children of interracial unions.
I loved the way the characters were included in the historical events letting us see the historical events through their eyes. The story was not interspersed with long descriptions of historical events, they may have been discussed at the dinner table or a heading read out from a newspaper. We are also shown how children of mixed blood are treated in Japan.
As the story progresses you also get to witness the bombing of Nagasaki, again through the eyes of one of the characters. You experience trying to escape from Nazi Germany before it is too late.
I loved every single page of this book, that’s 715 of them. There’s plenty of tragedy, heartbreak, nail-biting and history right to the very last page.
Omamori refers to a token.
This is another for my Historical Fiction Reading Challenge.
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Another one I have to get!