Shocked by the disappearance of Hiinahime, Ichirô, a young samurai, has only one idea in mind, to find the assassin and avenge the death of his master. He also wishes to return the mysterious sword to a lord of Osaka and thus grant Hiinahime's last wish. For this, he joins the Sanada clan.
(Google translated from French)
About the book
Ichirou has fled Edo and with Shin stops in his old village. Here, it’s buried Marumasa’s sword, entrusted by Kama to his master (and Ichirou’s father figure) some time before. The two are followed by a ninja Seirei who wants to take them to Kyoto where Akemi can use them for her work. But with the sword comes a message to go to the temple and entrust the sword to a certain monk. So the three go to the temple, but the monk is not there. Here the three stop for the winter until they decide to leave, but suddenly the monk arrives, who is none other than Kama, who entrusts the sword to the monk who hosted the three, he has no time to think about the sword becasue he has to return to Osaka where his boss has just surrendered to shogun Ieyasu.
The chronicles of maple and cherry tree form a tetralogy set in seventeenth-century Japan. We follow two heroes, Ichirō, a young samurai with a fabulous destiny, and the mysterious Hiinahime, a stranger who hides behind a Nō mask. In the first two volumes the narrator is Ichirō, in the other two it will be the heroine Hiinahime's turn to tell the story. The first volume, entitled The Nō Mask, traces Ichirō's life from childhood to adolescence. Abandoned, Ichirō is raised as a son by an unknown samurai who teaches him the way of the sword. The boy will live a solitary existence in the mountains, in the heart of a wild nature and at the rhythm of the seasons, between moments of bliss and lightheartedness and an apprenticeship that requires perseverance and courage. But one tragic night, Ichirō's life is turned upside down by the attack of shady samurai. Destiny will then take him to Edo (ancient Tokyo), where he will begin performing in kabuki theaters; there he will make his first friendships and meet Hiinahime, the unknown woman with the Nō mask.
About the book
First book in the series set in Edo period Japan (17th century) entitled Les chroniques de l’érable et du cerisier which, from the Italan translation (sorry don’t know any French) should be The Chronicles of Maple and Cherry tree, a very intriguing title. We are in the period in which the Tokugawa family holds the maximum political and military power in Japan, a period of isolation and persecution of Christians.
The book begins with a Master, a former samurai, who finds a child in a biwa shell in the forest near his isolated mountain home. He takes him home and together with the housekeeper he raises him as if he were his son. The latter, Ichirō, is raised with samurai teachings, of which the Master is an expert, until the Master’s past comes knocking on the door of the isolated house and Ichirō is catapulted into ancient Edo (current Tokyo) where, to survive, he has to beg and live on the streets, until he meets a poet who will help him find work. He also discovers the Kabuki theater and thanks to this, he makes his first friends. In Edo he also meets Hiinahime, a girl who hides behind a mask of the Nō theater.
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