Jet Black and the Ninja Wind

Leza Lowitz and Shogo Oketani. Tuttle, $17.99 (320p) ISBN 978-4-8053-1284-1
In this meticulously researched adventure, the husband-and-wife team of Oketani and Lowitz evoke the atmosphere and richness of Japanese culture and mythology, delving into the lore of the ninja. When 17-year-old Jet Black’s mother dies, Jet travels to the ancestral home she’s never known to meet unfamiliar kin and uncover her own mysterious heritage. She soon learns that a powerful organization is after her, certain that she holds the key to a long-hidden treasure of immense value. As Jet embraces her mystic skills as a rare female ninja, she tries to uncover the secret her family has held safe for centuries, while unraveling her complicated feelings toward Takumi, the young man in charge of hunting her down. The physical descriptions are lush, the action sequences almost cinematic, and the details are steeped in authenticity. However, there’s a certain academic stiffness to the writing that, when combined with certain pacing problems (the amount of detail the authors attempt to include can impede the story’s momentum), detracts from the overall sense of wonder. Ages 12–up. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 08/26/2013
Release date: 10/01/2013
Genre: Children's
Paperback - 320 pages - 978-0-8048-4402-4
Hardcover - 320 pages - 978-0-8048-4699-8
Paperback - 320 pages - 978-0-8048-4884-8
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