The Tengu’s Game of Go (Book 4) by Lian Hearn

The Tengu's Game of Go (Tale of the Shikanoko, #4)The Tengu’s Game of Go by Lian Hearn
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Before you pick up this fourth book, read the first three. Hearn does an excellent job of keeping the various plot threads woven nicely throughout the four books, bringing them through to the conclusion of the tale and fourth book. I like that there are multiple characters and not just one hero. This makes for a much more satisfying read overall. The writing continues to be solid and well edited. I feel the conclusion is satisfying, especially for the style this is written in. I like the sizes (lengths) of each book as it makes it easier to carry one with you to read as there is time, unlike trying to carry a huge thousand page novel around. I like the Japanese myth feel to the whole story. I like the majority of the characters and how they are manipulated. Overall, this is an enjoyable series with a well thought through story line. I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review. This in no way influenced my opinion.

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Lord of the Darkwood (Book 3) by Lian Hearn

Lord of the Darkwood (Tale of Shikanoko, #3)Lord of the Darkwood by Lian Hearn
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is the 3rd of 4 books that need to be read in order otherwise you’ll miss out on important pieces and generally feel like you’ve stepped into the middle of something with no reference points. The writing continues to be well done and well edited. This installment provides valuable information as the plot temporarily slows down in order to incorporate this information. This can make it seem sluggish or even a tad bit boring if your main focus is forward driven action. What is learned here sets the stage for the final book where hopefully the various plot threads weave nicely towards the completion of the tale. I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review. This in no way influenced my opinion.

Autumn Princess, Dragon Child (Book 2) by Lian Hearn

Autumn Princess, Dragon Child (Tale of Shikanoko, #2)Autumn Princess, Dragon Child by Lian Hearn
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Read the first installment before you read this one. Think of the four book series as one continuous story that happens to be separated into separate books for ease of reading, not for division of plot or for any other reason. Where the first book introduced the reader to setting and characters, the second book continues to move the pieces into place with experiences, gains, losses, and so forth. The writing remains the same, well-written with good flow and maintenance of the various plot threads. The style fits the story. It was easy to become immersed in the read, which I found to be enjoyable, intriguing, and well constructed. I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review. This in no way influenced my opinion.

The Emperor of the Eight Islands by Lian Hearn

The Emperor of the Eight Islands (Tale of Shikanoko, #1)The Emperor of the Eight Islands by Lian Hearn
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

As with many first installments of a multiple¬†book series, this one starts out a little sluggish but quickly reaches a decent pace. I found the various plot threads intriguing while feeling well researched. I have only a minor knowledge of Japanese folklore so I’m far from qualified to speak on that aspect. That said, I enjoyed the way it was presented and how it makes sense for the novel. The world-building is nicely done and the foundation for what drives the main characters is in place. The read is easy enough for all readers although I don’t feel this is aimed at younger readers. Overall this is an entertaining enjoyable read that reminds me of how old tales were once told. I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review. This in no way influenced my opinion.