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{Read Epub} è The Incense Game ⚤ Winner of RT Magazine s Reviewers Choice Award for Best Historical MysteryIn the wake of a terrifying earthquake, Sano Ichiro races to solve a crime that could bring down the shogun s regimeWhen a massive earthquake devastates Japan in , even the shogun s carefully regulated court is left teetering on the brink of chaos This is no time for a murder investigation except when a nobleman s daughters are found dead from incense poisoning and their father threatens to topple the regime unless Sano Ichiro tracks down the killerAs Sano and his wife strive to solve the case in a world that is crumbling around them, Laura Joh Rowland author of one of the five best historical mystery novels The Wall Street Journal brings us her most powerful and evocative thriller set in Feudal Japan yet, The Incense Game I ve been off of the Rowland bandwagon of novels for several months mostly because I could not find the books I needed to read in the sequence at the library My remedy to the problem was to change the library I visited and Voila I found books This novel has the same major characters and villains with a fewadded into the mix Although Sano san is high ranking, he cannot get away from his investigation responsibilities A couple of interesting twists at the end. I JUST finished this and I ll be back with a full review, but I wanted to add some notes TW Transphobia, Rape, Pedophlia, Suicide, At first I was impressed with how0 they kept using someone s preferred pronouns Then the situation took a nasty turn It was disturbing how the character s started describing them, how all of a sudden their birth sex was apparent and how they d been fooled To make matters worse, they were not transgender by choice but were the villain by choice So again, in a I JUST finished this and I ll be back with a full review, but I wanted to add some notes TW Transphobia, Rape, Pedophlia, Suicide, At first I was impressed with how0 they kept using someone s preferred pronouns Then the situation took a nasty turn It was disturbing how the character s started describing them, how all of a sudden their birth sex was apparent and how they d been fooled To make matters worse, they were not transgender by choice but were the villain by choice So again, in a book with a setting where m m, f f, and bisexuality is accepted as normal and unremarked upon, the T gets phobia and villainy Sano doesn t even agree about keeping the secret because of respect, but because it threatens his master s regime UGH While the shogan doesn t have an active harem of boys in this installment, just pages at this time, there are references to his history and I m sure he won t be celibate for long There is a victim of rape with her brother being the perpetrator This is referred to as incest as if she was a willing participant The victim blaming is excruciating and society is her adversary to justice and peace She has PTSD, anxiety, and is the one to commit suicide An aside Apparently in this society, incest is perfectly normal as is it resulting in children I m always impressed how Rowland keeps things fresh, evolving, and progressing Holy fucking shit, that ending Beginners beware, this is not the place to start this excellent series you ll spend too much time wondering who is who, and not enough marveling at Rowland s ability to spin a murder mystery in the middle of a tale about recovery from terrible disasters The story opens with the murder itself, which takes place just prior to the earthquake of 1703, also vividly described Rowland deftly juxtaposes the small tragedy against the backdrop of the larger one, as people scramble to recover from the d Beginners beware, this is not the place to start this excellent series you ll spend too much time wondering who is who, and not enough marveling at Rowland s ability to spin a murder mystery in the middle of a tale about recovery from terrible disasters The story opens with the murder itself, which takes place just prior to the earthquake of 1703, also vividly described Rowland deftly juxtaposes the small tragedy against the backdrop of the larger one, as people scramble to recover from the disaster that s leveled much of the city I think one of the strongest testaments to her storytelling power is that even sixteen volumes in, I still remember and care about each of the characters I think she only needed a sentence to remind me of who they were and the problems they re facing I often wish these books had a larger fandom and or could be made into a compelling mini series there is so much rich plot and character development in them that they would catch on like wildfire What an excellent read, and with a plausible but completely surprising twist about three quarters of the way through At sixteen books into this series, Rowland still manages to write an intriguing mystery and set it amidst the historical backdrop of the devastating 1703 earthquake As always, it s a quick, light read with plenty of political machinations and personal perils that keep the pages turning.HOWEVER My continuing irritation with the series is once again Hirata and the increasingly ridiculous mystical, magical martial arts It adds so very little to the series and detracts too much from the meticulous At sixteen books into this series, Rowland still manages to write an intriguing mystery and set it amidst the historical backdrop of the devastating 1703 earthquake As always, it s a quick, light read with plenty of political machinations and personal perils that keep the pages turning.HOWEVER My continuing irritation with the series is once again Hirata and the increasingly ridiculous mystical, magical martial arts It adds so very little to the series and detracts too much from the meticulously constructed reality she s created Worse yet, his subplot in this installment seems like such a perfunctory afterthought that you could edit him out entirely and really only have to alter one scene It s an annoyance that makes my eyes roll and keeps me from rating it higher Again, I ask why Rowland has taken such care to craft an immersive, realistic, and believable world in detail, plot, motives, and explanation, only to muck it up with supernatural and fantastical elements that belong in an entirely different novel Kill off the character and or end the subplot, please It drags down an otherwise enjoyable mystery