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Removed (The Nogiku Series #1)

4.10  ·  Rating Details  ·  124 Ratings  ·  62 Reviews
Duty knows no family. Love has no price. Secrets can cost you everything.

Twenty-year-old Sanaa Griffin is about to get more than she bargained for when she wishes for love, happiness, and excitement on New Year’s Eve. Ripped from the job she always loved, she is reassigned to work for mysterious Mark Sakai and spy on the corrupt leaders of her city. War looms on the horizo
Published September 11th 2013 by Onigiri Press (first published September 10th 2013)
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S.J. Pajonas
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Watch the book trailer on YouTube!

Want to see what inspired REMOVED? Check out the Pinterest board for images and videos of Japan, food, geishas, tattoos, and kimono.

Be sure to visit my blog at for
P.K. Hrezo
Jan 31, 2014 P.K. Hrezo rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

Removed is a unique fusion of the modern and traditional. I relished the artful way this story was put together--from the martial arts and sword fighting, to the futuristic dome world of Japan--this elegantly told sci-fi tale is a treat for readers who crave a decadent dollop of culture atop their stories du jour.

20-year-old, Sanaa, is a sweet, but sassy protagonist. Naive in some ways, but far from ignorant. Throughout the story her personality is painted in such a way, that envisioning her is
Sep 09, 2013 Cori rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle
When my friend Steph said she was going to write a book, I will admit, I was not very intrigued. And then she said it was Japanese inspired, and in the future, and the world had fallen to pieces and the last inhabitants lived in a dome. Uh, what now? Sure, I liked sushi and geishas, but was not a fan of sci-fi or end of the earth stories. But I love to read, so I offered to be a beta reader, AND I LOVED ALL OF IT! Throughout the process I loved seeing all of the changes, the development of the c ...more
There are some books for which you read the blurb and know that you are going to love it, Removed was one of those books for me. Once I read the blurb I couldn't get it out of my head and it didn't took me long to give over to the temptation and buy it.

I hardly know where to start with this review, Removed was amzing and I fell completely in love with the story. The pace of the story is slow, but it perfectly fits the book. Also around halfway through the story really picks up, things are starti
Dec 25, 2013 Vanessa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
*I received a copy of Removed from the Author in exchange for an honest review*

Apologies first of all for taking a while to get this review up

I enjoyed this book a lot. I feel, however, that a reader needs to be really comfortable with reading literature that uses words from other languages or else they can lose interest. Fortunately, this was not the case for me. I can't say that I identified with the heroine, Sanaa but I still felt invested enough to carry on with the story. What did stand out
This book pretty much blew me away and it's going to be one of those that stays with me for days! I love post-apocalyptic tales and sci-fi. Throw in some historical elements, a little romance (well, maybe more than a little), even geisha, and you have a completely unique, original tale that completely captured me from beginning to end.

This book was very well written and edited and the world building was clever and very descriptive! I could see this world clearly in my mind. Learning about the Ja
Annika Barranti Klein
I read an early draft of REMOVED and absolutely LOVED it. I'm so excited for its release!
Nicole Hewitt
This review and many more can be found on my blog: Feed Your Fiction Addiction.

Removed is an incredibly unique dystopian novel that is steeped in Japanese culture. I read a blog post where the reviewer was just raving about this series, and I just knew I needed to pick it up. I’m so glad I did!!

The book takes place in a futuristic version of Earth where global warming has ravaged the world and killed off much of the population. People have been living in domes, but they have been working toward
Derek White
Jun 19, 2014 Derek White rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I have never before been a fan of post-apocalyptic tales as I found them depressing, but this book has changed my mind and I look forward to reading the second in the series.
As the synopsis says it chronicles the adventures of a twenty year old girl who finds herself involved in the politics of the various clans and businesses in a domed city I will think of as Japan competing for the future leadership of the colony planet(s) the six million plus humans left on the world are going to migrate to.
Heather McCoubrey
Jan 01, 2015 Heather McCoubrey rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Heather by: Tracy
I started this book back in November and for some reason or another - maybe my head wasn't in the right place or I was too busy writing and finishing my latest novel - I just couldn't get into the story. I tried several times over the last few months, only to set it aside, frustrated because I'd heard what an amazing book it was. Since I sent my latest WiP out to my beta readers, I've had a little more time on my hands and I've been catching up on my to-read list. I was determined to read Remove ...more
Originally posted at Sporadic Reads

...bring me love and happiness this year.

*The ARC ofRemoved was provided by Lola's Blog Tours in exchange for an honest review.*

Removedcame out as a surprise for me. It was great surprise, actually. I didn't know that I would actually like it. I found myself using a lot of Japanese terms because of this book. My brother was quite happy about that because he watches a lot of animé. The story was both engaging and intriguing. I found myself guessing where the p
Sep 09, 2013 Pia rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I received an ARC of S.J. Pajonas' Removed (The Nogiku Series #1) and all I can say is that I cannot wait for Book #2 to be released.

Set in a futuristic, post apocalyptic Earth, this New-Adult, "sort of Science Fiction" takes you into the life of a coming-of-age woman, Sanaa as she learns about her herself, her heritage, love and what the future just may hold for her. The vivid descriptions of food, clothing, and even tattoos were just enough to have me pausing to imagine things, but not so muc
Kimberly Sabatini
Sep 17, 2013 Kimberly Sabatini rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: new-adult
Both in life and in my reading material, I haven't done a lot of delving into the Japanese culture. I recently got my first literary taste of Japan in Daisy Whitney's WHEN YOU WERE HERE, a YA novel that spends part of it's time in Tokyo. If WHEN YOU WERE HERE was the appetizer for discovering another culture, the New Adult novel REMOVED is the meal and I loved what I was tasting. Both authors won me over with their cultural passion and Pajonas' captivation with Japan is skillfully woven into her ...more
Sep 14, 2013 Leah rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: first-reads
Full disclosure, I was lucky enough to be a Beta reader for the Nogiku series and received and ARC of “Removed” for review.

When my friend S.J. Pajonas mentioned the outline for her book on twitter, a sci-fi romance set in a dystopian future where Japanese traditions are upheld hand in hand with all things futuristic, I was intrigued! While it seems like an impossible task to plausibly fit all of these things into a story, in “Removed” it is done seamlessly. Our heroine, Sanaa Griffin’s world ch
Jul 08, 2014 Leslye marked it as didn-t-finish  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley
I wish I could have finished this - but at 26% it had yet to get to the point. I have an incredibly short attention span and I was holding out until the love interest dude reared his head again, but once he re-entered the scene, the story continued its maddening lack of forward motion. The worldbuilding kept me around for a pretty long time as well, considering, but the main character was lackluster and after pages and pages of inertia, I stopped caring about where the story was going, if, in fa ...more
Katie Carroll
Sep 07, 2013 Katie Carroll rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: new-adult
In Removed, book one of the Nogiku Series, S.J. Pajonas has created a futuristic world that is steeped in Japanese culture and is like no other world I have read before. On New Year's Eve while celebrating her 20th birthday, Sanaa Griffin makes a wish for the new year to bring her love. A change in the course of her career and life brings love and so much more as Sanaa finds out the truth about her family and destiny.

Sanaa's relationship with Jiro, her swoonworthy sword fighting teacher, progres
I am so delighted to review Removed. I have read it a few times now and it's really such a fully-realized world with wonderful characters that it's difficult to put down- and so depressing when those last pages are turned! I read a lot of YA/NA books and love a good, realistic strong female protagonist, but there are a lot of cliches out there that so many books fall into. Pajonas has avoided these and created a character I adore, respect, and kind of wish I could be. There are lots of great thi ...more
Jan 05, 2014 Laurel rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: first-reads
I absolutely loved this book. Every time I thought I had a plot twist figured out, something happened to make me rethink my idea. I am now going to have to patiently wait for book 2. I lost a good bit of sleep trying to get as much reading done as possible each time I picked it up. I have only one small problem with any part of it but that is just me wanting to know how to pronounce certain of the japanese words in the book correctly.I don't want to give spoilers but I really think the relations ...more
Anna Bastow
Apr 08, 2014 Anna Bastow rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Princess Diaries gets a Katana in future Japan.
This author's prose is as delicate as a paper rice lamp. The craftsmanship of this universe is impeccable. The story is rich with details about dress, culture and words. The characters live and breath and have complex personalities that will keep you guessing every turn of page.
If you wanted to read about how will Japanese culture will survive beyond our planet this is the book for you.
This book will make you crave Japanese food! Get some bef
Mar 07, 2014 Skylar rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ficton
What a brilliant story! Historically, I haven't been much of a fan of dystopian tales (except for The Hunger Games) or science fiction. However, this book may have changed me forever. The dystopian and sci-fi aspects play less of a role than the beautiful and aching tale of Sanaa. Her history, her present, and her future are all so full of mystery, intrigue and heroism. I highly recommend this New Adult Sci-Fi read, especially if you are considering dipping your toes into either of these genres.
Jan 20, 2015 Laurel rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Larissa Brown
Have you ever wanted to kick ass, win the beautiful boy and literally rule the world? Through Sanaa Griffin's eyes you can, and it's pretty fun. The story is a classic set-up: an average person learns that they are actually someone/something incredibly special, and it turns their life upside down.

What I am enjoying most about this series is the world. Most of all, I love the atmosphere of family and close friends, and the feeling of the protective circle around Sanaa. I also love the clothes, th
Moira Katson
A fascinating new series set in an interesting future! I think you should read it. Got it? Good.

Okay, there were a couple of things I would have liked to see here. Sanaa accepted a major plot point with grace, and embraced it with courage and stick-to-it-iveness, but her mentions of longing for her old life seemed to be just that - mentions. Whole everything around her shifts, Sanaa retains her calm, and this is a quality I would have liked to see be developed before the plot twist came.

With tha
Denyse Loeb
Feb 02, 2014 Denyse Loeb rated it did not like it
Shelves: couldn-t-finish
I really wanted to like REMOVED, but the writing was awkward and the story itself way too slow—a third of the way through and, yes, the MC's job has changed and she's connected with the main love interest, but the reasons for these things is more of a side plot that's gotten to occasionally rather than being explored. The writing felt appropriate for a younger audience than I thought the book was intended for and wasn't strong enough to keep me slogging through.

I may attempt it again at a later
Laz the Sailor
Feb 18, 2015 Laz the Sailor rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: scifi
I read this as part of an anthology of scifi romance books, and while the romance is pretty tame, the post-apocalyptic story is quite good.

Take a devastated remnant of humanity living under domes, focus them on building space ships to find a new world, add in culture clashes and politics, and stir.

Oh, and everything rests on a young woman who has no idea who she is.

I really enjoy stories that don't spent 50 pages explaining how all the bad things happened, but simply sprinkle references along th
Carolyn F.
Anthology part of Nebula Nights: Love Among The Stars

I'm going to be in the minority on this book but I felt the first half at least was way too slow going. The book could have been about 75 pages less and we still would have got the gist of the story without all the day by day training sessions and drives back and forth on the transit. Once the action started (not until about the last 1/4 of the book) it was better. However, if it would have been a paperback I probably would have skipped a bunc
Mar 17, 2015 Kara-karina rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle, sci-fi
Ugh, what a drag! It could have been so exciting, instead it was drowned in all things trivial. Review soon!
Aug 03, 2015 Airwreckah rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle, boxset
The main character was a bit too Mary Sue: Destined, making big decisions that wow her experienced advisors, kicking major ass after little time... Things came too easy. But my main issues were with the way the japanese elements were treated and the basic plot. I felt like this was a poor fan fic of lucy liu's kill bill character shoe-horned into some vague sci fi bubble world. In a word: Weeabo.

There were a few grammatical errors, but the quality of the writing was actually good- very readable
Kerry O'Dea
Jun 09, 2014 Kerry O'Dea rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I found this book to be quite captivating. The mixture of the futuristic world and the traditional Japanese culture was done so well that neither seemed out of place. A few times I had to pause to figure out what was going on because the Japanese culture is unfamiliar to me. I really enjoyed learning about their traditions.

The characters were great. I loved Sanaa. She was super sweet, but not a pushover. She lives with her Aunts. Yes they are lesbians. I thought that was awesome. I have yet to
David Chittenden
Duty knows no family. Love has no price. Secrets can cost you everything.

Twenty-year-old Sanaa Griffin, a sweet and smart half-Japanese girl, is about to get more than she bargained for when she wishes for love and excitement on New Year’s Eve 3103. Mark Sakai, who knows more about her than any stranger should, thinks Sanaa is the perfect person to spy on the heads of the three biggest Japanese clan leaders in Nishikyō. He wants her to gather enough evidence to keep them from going to war when t
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Stephanie (S. J.) is a writer, knitter, amateur astrologer, Capricorn, and Japanophile. She loves foxes, owls, sushi, yoga pants, Evernote, and black tea. When she’s not writing, she’s thinking about writing or spending time outside, unless it’s winter. She hates winter. Someday she’ll own a house in both hemispheres so she can avoid the s
More about S.J. Pajonas...

Other Books in the Series

The Nogiku Series (5 books)
  • Released (The Nogiku Series, #2)
  • Reunited (The Nogiku Series, #3)
  • Reclaimed (The Nogiku Series, #4)
  • Revealed (The Nogiku Series #5)

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