Flying Fish, by Sedonia Guillone
Series: Sword and Silk Trilogy #1
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: August 17, 2016
Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars
In eighteenth century Japan, during the golden age of samurai and of the Kabuki theater, young actors known as “flying fish” traveled the countryside, performing for audiences by day and giving their bodies to their samurai patrons at night.
Genji Sakura is one such flying fish, yet he dreams of finding the man he can give his heart to and leave the loneliness of his itinerant life behind. Though he loves theater, he doesn’t love every part of his profession, especially some of the patrons. So when a handsome ronin comes upon him stealing some solitude for a bath in a hot spring and their encounter turns passionate, Genji’s surprised and delighted.
Daisuke Minamoto’s past fills his life with a bitterness that grips his soul and makes him dangerous. Yet passion takes him when he spies on a graceful young man bathing naked in a hot spring. He has always loved women, but he can’t deny the call of his heart.
After an afternoon of sexual bliss, his heart and soul are tormented and torn. Keeping this miraculous lover will require giving up the one thing that has kept him alive for years: his hatred for the lord who murdered his wife. If he loves another, how will he go on and who will he become?
A Timeless Dreams title: While reaction to same-sex relationships throughout time and across cultures has not always been positive, these stories celebrate M/M love in a manner that may address, minimize, or ignore historical stigma.
Historical (Japanese, Samurai)
Books like this one are what I would consider instant gratification. Things move at a very quick pace, but since this little novella is only around 80 pages, I think that’s to be expected if you’re looking for a HEA. I really enjoy shorter books such as this because they serve as a palette cleanser in between longer novels and I can usually get everything I’m looking for in one sitting.
Before I get into the story I’d just like to point out that while the second edition cover through Dreamspinner is very nice, I was disappointed to see the original go away.
Originally created by illustrator and comic artist Yuramei, it may not have screamed “romance novel” by today’s standards but it beautifully depicted the story within. The art set this book apart in a sea of ‘shopped cover models and was partly the reason why I picked it up in the first place.
The other reason is because of the unique story. Flying Fish is a wonderful tale with a message that true happiness can change your entire outlook on life and your perspective on what is most important. Seeing Daisuke go through these changes made me take note to the way I react to people and situations in my own life. It’s also a good example of how giving up an opportunity in a less than ideal environment can open doors to something better. The grass isn’t always greener, but sometimes it is, and taking a chance on someone can have its rewards.
Genji and Daisuke have stolen my heart with their strong personalities and willingness to jump in with both feet. I love when characters recognize attraction right away and can’t stop thinking about one another. Maybe a little part of me wants to live the romantic fantasy when you’re irresistible to someone and there’s not much they won’t do so you can be together. *Sigh*
Gorgeously written with attention to detail, I found this book to be delightful and I’m very much looking forward to reading more from this author.
Multipublished, award-nominated author, Sedonia Guillone lives in Florida in winter and on a river in Maine in summers with a Renaissance man who paints, writes poetry, and tells her she’s the sweetest nymph he’s ever met. When she’s not writing toe-curling romances, she loves watching spaghetti westerns, Jet Li, and samurai flicks, cuddling with her cat, Molly, and eating chocolate.
You can purchase Flying Fish from:
All Romance eBooks
Barnes & Noble
I received an advanced copy of this novel in exchange for a fair and honest review.