I am not the biggest fan of fantasy books. I read ‘The Lord of the Rings’ and loved it but I don’t intentionally search them out. ‘Across the Nightingale Floor’ is a fantasy book and one I thoroughly enjoyed. I could not put the book down and I am currently reading the last book in the trilogy.
Set in a country and time similar to ancient Japan the story follows the same principals of most fantasy books. Laced with ferocious battles, long an arduous quest this book makes for entertaining reading. The Japanese element also made this book slightly more interesting then most fantasy, I was interested in their class system, the need for honour at all costs and if it is not obtained then death must come by your own hand.
This story focus on the Otori clan and the struggle of the heir (Shigeru) has trying to claim what is rightfully his. Shigeru stumbles upon a young Hidden boy running from the clutches on the evil Tohan clan. Saving the boys life Shigeru decided to protect it further by adopting Tomasu and naming Otori Takeo. Neither had any idea how powerful that name would become.
I could not stop reading, for me this was a huge page turner. I had to know what happened to Shigeru and Takeo, would old wrongs be righted and would revenge be granted to them. Of course as with any fantasy story there is romance and being a romantic at heart I loved the descriptions of the first meetings, the need to be together and the stolen glances. However, the finest descriptive passages in the book come from the gruesomeness yet poetic of the battle scene. You feel as if you are there watching the blades slice through air and flesh with equal ease.
I recommend this book to everyone, though if you are into battles, ancient family honour codes and revenge then this story is definitely for you. I warn you though, once you read the first you will have to read the second and third books, this story doesn’t really stand alone but once you finish ‘Across the Nightingale Floor’ I think you will want to read the rest anyway.