You will not believe that this is the author's first book! It's simply an amazing adventure story of the high seas in the 1800's, from Japan to New England and back again. We meet Manjiro, a teenage Japanese fisherman who is stranded by a shipwreck and eventually picked up by an American whaling ship. That begins Manjiro's odyssey, which includes adoption, learning to live in a small American town, dealing with all sorts of prejudice and anger, and growing into a man with a real mixed and conflicted cultural identity. Will this poor stranded fisherman ever achieve his dream of becoming a samurai?
This is an amazing story, an epic tale of adventure, courage, and the power of the human spirit to overcome all odds. I recommend this to everyone! Especially history buffs, those who have an interest in Japan, fishing and whaling, life in the 1800's, classic sea adventures, and amazing writing.