Daughter of the Sword (Fated Blades #1)
by Steve Bein
published by ROC
genre: Adult, Historical, Urban Fantasy, Asian
Summary (Goodreads): Mariko Oshiro is not your average Tokyo cop. As the only female detective in the city’s most elite police unit, she has to fight for every ounce of respect, especially from her new boss. While she wants to track down a rumored cocaine shipment, he gives her the least promising case possible. But the case—the attempted theft of an old samurai sword—proves more dangerous than anyone on the force could have imagined.
The owner of the sword, Professor Yasuo Yamada, says it was crafted by the legendary Master Inazuma, a sword smith whose blades are rumored to have magical qualities. The man trying to steal it already owns another Inazuma—one whose deadly power eventually comes to control all who wield it. Or so says Yamada, and though he has studied swords and swordsmanship all his life, Mariko isn’t convinced.
But Mariko’s skepticism hardly matters. Her investigation has put her on a collision course with a curse centuries old and as bloodthirsty as ever. She is only the latest in a long line of warriors and soldiers to confront this power, and even the sword she learns to wield could turn against her.
My Thoughts: I loved this book more than the time it took me to read it shows. I've been in a reading slump and this made a large dent in pulling me out of it.
I often read and enjoy crime and mystery books and the additional of historical Japanese storytelling mixed in just put it over the top.
Mariko was a great lead. She is a strong female in a world where anything else would not work. As the only female detective, in a culture that is not very accepting of females in that position, she has no choice but to be tough. That said, she is not an emotionless robot. There were a couple of times were you could tell her heart was overruling her discipline.
My favorite parts were the chapters that went back in time and told the stories of the three swords. I could have read a book just on their history and been happy. The author did a great job weaving the old and new together in a way that when they meet up, it was seamless.
Overall this book worked on many levels. It kept my attention at a time when I was having trouble keeping any interest in a book. It was a great mix of old and new where the swords as much a main character as Mariko is. Another plus, book two comes out next week and I am looking forward to reading more.