Thursday, Dec. 09, 2010

The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet by David Mitchell

Ever at the mercy of his restless genius, David Mitchell has allowed himself to be spirited away to late 18th century Japan, where a young clerk of the Dutch East Indies Company is attempting to win fortune and favor in the chancy business of trading with the Shogun. At that time, Japan was sealed off from Westerners, so de Zoet and his colleagues, a grab bag of schemers, eccentrics and exiles, conduct their affairs from a tiny quarantined island in Nagasaki Bay. Which works well enough until de Zoet crosses a sinister nobleman and falls in love with a mysterious, disfigured medical student.