Publication Date: July 14, 2015
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Formats: eBook, Hardcover
Series: Shinobi Mysteries (Volume 3)
Genre: Historical Mystery
Source: Publisher via Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours for an honest review
August 1565: When a rival artisan turns up dead outside Ginjiro's brewery, and all the evidence implicates the brewer, master ninja Hiro Hattori and Portuguese Jesuit Father Mateo must find the killer before the magistrate executes Ginjiro and seizes the brewery, leaving his wife and daughter destitute. A missing merchant, a vicious debt collector, and a female moneylender join Ginjiro and the victim's spendthrift son on the suspect list. But with Kyoto on alert in the wake of the shogun's recent death, a rival shinobi on the prowl, and samurai threatening Hiro and Father Mateo at every turn, Ginjiro's life is not the only one in danger.
Will Hiro and Father Mateo unravel the clues in time to save Ginjiro's life, or will the shadows gathering over Kyoto consume the detectives as well as the brewer?
Flask of the Drunken Master is the latest entry in Susan Spann's thrilling 16th century Japanese mystery series, featuring ninja detective Hiro Hattori and Jesuit Father Mateo.
Although I haven't read the previous Shinobi Mystery titles, I thoroughly enjoyed the third book in the series, Flask of the Drunken Master. I found the mystery of who killed the brewer to be engaging, but I also found the explanations of the working of the legal system to be every bit as interesting as the mystery itself. I thought Spann did a great job of inserting lots of background information into the story without slowing the pace or losing the reader's interest along the way.
Even though the novel was a fast, enjoyable read and the mystery at first, seemingly straightforward, there was a surprising amount of complexity in the story. The intricacies of Japanese social rules, the tension caused by the shogun's recent death, the conflicts Hiro faces trying to protect Father Mateo, and the tensions between local artisans all make for a riveting story. There is also much humor throughout the novel. I was surprised to find that I had read the book in a single day.
I would love to read the other books in the series because I had so much fun reading Flask of the Drunken Master and look forward to more books in the series. This is a mystery that will appeal to and is appropriate for a large variety of readers.
Praise for Claws of the Cat"Spann matches period detail with a well-developed whodunit plot in her promising debut, the first in a new series set in 16th-century Japan."
Shinobi Mystery Series TitlesBook One: Claws of the Cat (Library Journal Mystery Debut of the Month)
Book Two: Blade of the Samurai
Book Three: Flask of the Drunken Master
Flask of the Drunken Master Available atAmazon Barnes & Noble
About the AuthorSusan Spann acquired her love of books and reading during her preschool days in Santa Monica, California. As a child she read everything from National Geographic to Agatha Christie. In high school, she once turned a short-story assignment into a full-length fantasy novel (which, fortunately, will never see the light of day). A yearning to experience different cultures sent Susan to Tufts University in Boston, where she immersed herself in the history and culture of China and Japan. After earning an undergraduate degree in Asian Studies, Susan diverted to law school. She returned to California to practice law, where her continuing love of books has led her to specialize in intellectual property, business and publishing contracts. Susan’s interest in Japanese history, martial arts, and mystery inspired her to write the Shinobi Mystery series featuring Hiro Hattori, a sixteenth-century ninja who brings murderers to justice with the help of Father Mateo, a Portuguese Jesuit priest. When not writing or representing clients, Susan enjoys traditional archery, martial arts, horseback riding, online gaming, and raising seahorses and rare corals in her highly distracting marine aquarium. Susan lives in Sacramento with her husband, son, three cats, one bird, and a multitude of assorted aquatic creatures.
For more information please visit Susan Spann’s website and blog.
You can also find her on Facebook, Twitter, and Goodreads.
Flask of the Drunken Master Blog Tour ScheduleMonday, July 6
Excerpt at What Is That Book About
Tuesday, July 7
Review at Book Babe
Wednesday, July 8
Guest Post & Giveaway at To Read, Or Not to Read
Spotlight & Giveaway at Raven Haired Girl
Thursday, July 9
Interview at Oh, for the Hook of a Book!
Friday, July 10
Guest Post & Giveaway at Unshelfish
Monday, July 13
Guest Post at Shelf Full of Books
Spotlight at The Never-Ending Book
Tuesday, July 14
Review at Beth's Book Nook Blog
Thursday, July 16
Excerpt & Giveaway at Teddy Rose Book Reviews Plus More
Friday, July 17
Guest Post at Just One More Chapter
Monday, July 20
Guest Post & Giveaway at Booklover Book Reviews
Wednesday, July 22
Guest Post at Book Nerd
Review, Guest Post, & Giveaway at Queen of All She Reads
Thursday, July 23
Interview & Excerpt at Jorie Loves a Story
Friday, July 24
Guest Post at Book Dilettante
Monday, July 27
Guest Post at Reading the Past
Tuesday, July 28
Spotlight at A Literary Vacation
Thursday, July 30
Guest Post & Excerpt at at Oh, for the Hook of a Book!
Spotlight at CelticLady's Reviews
Monday, August 3
Review at Svetlana's Reads and Views
Tuesday, August 4
Review at A Book Geek
Wednesday, August 5
Guest Post at Editing Pen
Thursday, August 6
Review at Diana's Book Reviews
Friday, August 7
Guest Post at Boom Baby Reviews