I enjoyed reading this novel for the intricate and interesting plot and for the insight it gives to Japanese culture from this period. The characters were likeable. In particular, I enjoyed the story of Shota, and his journey to find his sister. The secondary storyline of the American officer, Benjamin, and the Japanese girl, Anko, also added an interesting second layer to the story that I wasn’t expecting.
My only real complaint was that the novel finished quite suddenly. While the main plot line had been somewhat resolved, others were left wide open. While I don’t generally mind a novel leaving some elements hanging, the ending was a little too abrupt for my tastes.