Lisa's Reviews > The Commoner

The Commoner by John Burnham Schwartz
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's review
Jul 09, 09

Read in July, 2009

The superior writing kept this novel from getting only two stars. The story centers on the struggles of Haruko, a well-to-do, but non-aristocratic girl, after she marries into the Japanese royal family in the 1930s. Cutoff from her family, her prior life, and controlled at every turn by the Imperial houshold guard, she becomes more a prisoner than a Princess. Years later, when she is Empress herself, she finds herself tasked with convincing another independently minded girl to marry her son, the Crown Prince. The book falls apart as the consequences of her son's marriage come home to her and the resolution is so far-fetched that it doesn't bear talking about. But, the story was well-written and kept my attention and for that I give it a lukewarm three stars.


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