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Risuko: A Kunoichi Tale

(Seasons of the Sword #1)

by
3.68  ·  Rating details ·  422 ratings  ·  236 reviews
My name is Kano Murasaki, but most people call me Risuko. Squirrel.

I am from Serenity Province, though I was not born there.

My nation has been at war for a hundred years, Serenity is under attack, my family is in disgrace, but some people think that I can bring victory. That I can be
a very special kind of woman.

All I want to do is climb.

Mywoman.
.
...more
Paperback, 1st trade, 230 pages
Published 2016 by Stillpoint Digital Press
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David
This answer contains spoilers… (view spoiler)
David Thanks for the question, Renee!

There is no sex in this book. There is some background romance; it's not a major theme in Risuko, but will become…more
Thanks for the question, Renee!

There is no sex in this book. There is some background romance; it's not a major theme in Risuko, but will become somewhat more important in later volumes in the series. (less)

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Average rating 3.68  · 
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Alex ☣ Deranged KittyCat ☣
As most of my goodreads buddies know, I despise young adult as a genre. The characters are always stupid and all the angst is useless. Authors make their characters unable to communicate with each other, and that leads to the most absurd/uncalled-for situations. So why did I sign up on NetGalley to read Risuko: A Kunoichi Tale? Because Japan! And because I really liked the cover.

The official description:
Though Japan has been devastated by a century of civil war, Risuko just wants to climb/>
...more
Taylor Knight
Jan 29, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: arcs
3.5 stars
I really loved the concept of this book and the writing was really great as well. I do think this is more Middle Grade than Young Adult though. I wasn't really expecting MG so I was a little bit disappointed. I thought the first %10 was kind of confusing and just felt weird to me but it definitely got better. I loved the Japanese culture and history and even though I don't much about Japan, it felt like the author did a great deal of research and knew what he was talking about.
The one th
...more
Amber
May 31, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I received a free ARC copy of this ebook from Netgalley, the Publisher, and the author in exchange for a honest review.

Risuko Murasaki loves to climb trees. When she is taken away from her family and sold to a noblewoman named Lady Chiyome who has chosen her to become a shrine maiden at her school The Full Moon, Risuko must quickly grow up and learn how to be a kunoichi while surviving in times of war. Want to read more? Check this book out for yourself and find out.

This
...more
Lonna | FLYLēF
FLYLēF Book Reviews

Original Post: Risuko: A Kunoichi Tale at FLYLēF (www.flylef.com)

IT WAS ODDLY nostalgic reading Risuko: A Kunoichi Tale by David Kudler. The vivid portrayal of the Japanese culture brought back many fond memories of my childhood, a time when I was much more rooted in my Asian heritage.

Kano Murasaki, nicknamed Risuko (Squirrel) is a young, fatherless girl with a gift for climbing. Her unique talent catches the eye of Lady Chiyome, Head Mistress of a remote school in Mount Fuji. Risuko soon f
...more
Dani ❤️ Perspective of a Writer
Thank you Netgalley and Stillpoint Digital Press for providing an arc in exchange for an honest review.

Risuko means squirrel and is a nickname for Kano Murasaki, a girl who loves to climb trees to escape the hardships her little sister and mother go through trying to survive without her father. Set in historical Japan, the land is torn apart by warring samurai lords trying to unite Japan under one flag. An old woman, Lady Chiyome, decided she wanted to play a part in forming Japan's future and
...more
Yon Nyan (BiblioNyan)
May 18, 2016 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: young-adult
Japanese literature, or literature with Japanese influences is one of my most favored types of genres to read. When I came across Risuko by David Kudler, which was described as a historical Japanese fiction novel with fantasy elements, I was immediately intrigued by it. I received this book about a month and a half ago. Since that period, I have made an attempt at starting it three times. Finally, when I began it for the fourth time, I forced myself to trudge through it and it took me almost three wee ...more
Efflorescence
Thanks to Netgalley and Stillpoint Digital Press for providing the ARC in exchange for an honest review.

This book was delicious.
This may sound absolutely weird, I know.
But I don't find another word for it.

I loved the cover, I love foreign languages, I think it's no wonder that I loved this book.
Though, I have to admit, at first it was a bit difficult for me to distinguish all the characters because of their Japanese names and because of all the nicknames
...more
Nicay Magnate
Mar 03, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle
description

description

Review originally posted at The Nerdy side of a queen


Thank you Netgalley and Stillpoint Digital Press for providing an arc in exchange for an honest review.

Characters:

-Risuko-Proper name: Kano Murasaki
-Lady Mochizuki Chiyome
-Mieko and Kuniko-Lady Chiyome’s maid
-Hanichi Emi and Tasugu Toumi-Risuko’s friends.
-Little brothers-Servants of Lady Chiyome.


Rating: 3.5 stars

“A Kunoichi is married to her duty and to death.”

I have a lot of things to say about this story by David Kudler; there were things that I didn’t like, still there were good things to mention. Let’s just talk about first what was the story all about.

description

description

Review originally posted at
The Nerdy side of a queen


Thank you Netgalley and Stillpoint Digital Press for providing an arc in exchange for an honest review.

Characters:

-Risuko-Proper name: Kano Murasaki
-Lady Mochizuki Chiyome
-Mieko and Kuniko-Lady Chiyome’s maid
-Hanichi Emi and Tasugu Toumi-Risuko’s friends.
-Little brothers-Servants of Lady Chiyome.


Rating: 3.5 stars

“A Kunoichi is married to her duty and to death.”

I have a lot of things to say about this story by David Kudler; there were things that I didn’t like, still there were good things to mention. Let’s just talk about first what was the story all about.

Risuko: A Kunoichi Tale takes place in Japan, specifically Mochizuki in Nagano. There was a girl named Kano Murasaki, or for everyone they called her Risuko (Squirrel). The reason for this nickname was because, she climbs trees and roofs as fast and high as the squirrel. She lives in a simple life with her mother and her sister, though their lives were not as good as the rich ones. But, someone made her life turn in an unexpected way; Lady Chiyome bought Risuko from her mother because she wants Risuko to train as Kunoichi (Ooppss. I will not tell you what really it is!) Before she become what her destiny wants her to be, she must first face the challenges that will make her stronger and will make her true abilities sharpen.

Well, I will not continue the story until the end, what am I a story teller? Just kidding. :D

Seriously, I will now make points on what are my perspectives about this book.

The things I like:

1. The concept of the story.
-I was become intrigued in the story line of this. It really fascinated me because of these facts: Young girl destined to fight for a war, sets in Japan and a historical fiction. What will I say? Though, I know there were a lot of books the same with this one; but one thing was for sure, the author really nailed this concept plus the cover was absolutely stunning.

2. The world built-up.
-For this, it was an OKAY for me. Well, it really didn’t level my expectations if I will base from the blurb in the story. Still, this really amazed and excites me as I read every chapter of the book, and I wasn’t really bored while reading this one. It was a light-read plus the words can pick-up easily which was a good point, because it was categorized for young-adult/middle grade. Thumbs up for this!

3. The characters.
-The characters felt like they were really a young persons, which is my standard to every book that I read. Though there were no progress has been made for them, still their characterizations was like a Ying and Yang—balance.

Next, the things that I dislike in this book:

1. CONFUSING.
-Yes. As I said earlier this story was a light-read; but there were times that I really got confused on what has happened in a particular scene. Fortunately, I was able to tolerate this one. But my concern was, if the others will read this especially the target audiences, it will give them a hard time to process on what’s happening to the story. On the positive side, you can still understand it because as I mention above, the author wrote it using with light words.

2. Unanswered questions.
-There were some parts that I didn’t quite understand, because there were parts that I hope it answered clearly. Well, it is the first book, and I’m still expecting alot from this.

Phew! Congratulations, I was able to make this review up to this point. LOL. As you noticed, my likes and dislikes for this book was a balance. If you will ask me if I will recommend this one, I will just say–YES.

description
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Casey
Feb 28, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.9 Stars

Rusiko is a beautiful story set in sixteenth century Japan. Females are warriors and Japan is tearing itself apart all in the belief they are helping put the country back together.

Risuko is full of beautiful language, amazing settings and jam packed with cultural knowledge.

I loved the descriptions of the fighting dance, the smooth movements and grace, the prediction of moves and serenity. I felt I was there doing the moves with Risuko in the falling snow with th
...more
Sue
Aug 29, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I really like this story. It has great characters, great history and the end surprised me. You should read it if you have the chance.
Ashley
Nov 01, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Rating: 3.5/5
(I received a free copy from the publisher, Stillpoint Digital Press, via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.)
***Minor spoilers***

Kano Murasaki has loved climbing her whole life. So much so that she has been nicknamed Risuko by her family - Squirrel. One moment she's simply climbing a tree with her sister, and the next she's going off with Lady Chiyome, who tells her that her mother has sold her to Lady Chiyome's services. Risuko doesn't know what this ent
...more
Jolly Per
Note: I received a digital copy of this book in exchange of an honest review. Thanks NetGalley for the ARC.

If you've been my friend for a long time, you would know how I love Japan; food, culture, mangas, people, language—name it. So basically, the title of this novel caught my attention that's why I signed up for it.

Anyway, the story was about Risuko on her journey to be a kunoichi, an assassin. Her mother sold her for an unknown reason (view spoiler)Note: I received a digital copy of this book in exchange of an honest review. Thanks NetGalley for the ARC.

If you've been my friend for a long time, you would know how I love Japan; food, culture, mangas, people, language—name it. So basically, the title of this novel caught my attention that's why I signed up for it.

Anyway, the story was about Risuko on her journey to be a kunoichi, an assassin. Her mother sold her for an unknown reason (view spoiler) The setting was during the sixteenth century and, obviously, in Japan and there were Japanese words that was used, which I honestly did not understand. (view spoiler) But the way Kudler described every scenery on the book was rich and flavorful; it was beautiful and amazing. And once again, I am in love with Japan.

Risuko was not who I thought she would be. At first, she seemed weak and meek, but as the story developed she showed she also had something else to give. And we also had this and those characters, y'know, the usual. But I had my fave, Masugu, who's perf af! (view spoiler)

Anyhow, it was an action-packed story, as expected. There were just parts that I found really confusing and puzzling. So perhaps, David could've explain those circumstances or events in a clear and subtle way. Then again, those were some of the reasons that I held on to finish this until the very end. *sigh* it was easy to get through Risuko's world.

The story was actually very nice. It was light-read but still very interesting as it surprised me in so many ways. The writing was smoothly done. The tone was placid. It was very refreshing and beautiful. Oh, and the cover was awesome; it would be nice addition in my bookshelf. I just can't wait for it to be distributed in the Philippines.


Final rating: SOLID 4 STARS!!!
...more
Sharon Mariampillai
I received a copy from Netgalley, in exchange for an honest review.

Actual Rating: 3.75

This was a great read. The story was interesting and fascinating. I thought that the story-telling was like that of an anime than a book. I enjoyed learning about Japan and its history. However, the story was not fast-paced and I thought that made the story a bit boring.

Risuko is an interesting character. Her name means "Squirrel" in Japanese because she loves to climb trees. I thought h/>
...more
Dilsh Wijesinghe
Apr 01, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley
"An Advanced Review Copy provided by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review."

Such a lovely & amazing book!!! This one was the best book I read ever. Everyone could be a writer, But everyone can't be an author. A clever author. I think David Kudler is a good author. A clever author. I must admire author's writing style. It was very impressive. Because when I read the first paragraph of the "prologue - Serenity" positive feelings come through my mind.

And yeah, this book was a page-the
...more
Rachel Stansel
Jan 02, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A beautiful story about a young girl in Japan during a time of great turmoil. Known as as Squirrel because of her ability to climb, she is sold away from her mom and sister to Lady Chiyome. Risuko doesn't know why or where she is headed. Along with two other girls, she finds herself at a school of sorts where they work in the kitchen and at lessons. The food is better than anything they have seen. Risuko learns more about the goal of the school and how her father's story brought her to this plac ...more
ɑƨħŵɑɡ ♥Team Magnus Damora FOREVER♥
I received a digital copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. Thanks to Stillpoint Digital Press and NetGalley for this opportunity.

I am really impressed by how my feelings changed from lack of interest to admiration for this book. The start was slow as always is with 'different' books. By different I mean not the usual mainstream/hyped up books. It's a literary work in its honest form. However, once I passed the 30% mark, I was starting to get invested in the story.

I like how uniqu
...more
Melody
Dec 18, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is AMAZING! The plot is interesting, the characters are interesting, just EVERYTHING was great. I can't recommend this enough to friends, family and random people on the internet! All ready waiting for the sequel!!!
Tayler Steele
**Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for a digital copy of this novel in exchange for a fair and honest review!**

This book wasn't at all what I was expecting, which was actually kind of nice.

First, I have to say that if I was a middle grades student, I probably would have absolutely loved this novel and given it 5 stars. The writing is definitely geared more toward a younger audience, but at the same time, some of the themes are decidedly not child-like. That really would have
...more
Kate
Jan 22, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Tough Love for a Lovable Novel

This review was originally posted on my blog Hounds & Habits.

Risuko by David Kudler is my first ARC and I absolutely loved the main character and story. Being an ARC, however, it needs a little tough love before it reaches its full potential.

Let’s get the bad stuff out of the way first.

The first thing anyone will notice about Risuko is the killer cover. I actually fell in love with the cover alone; this book barely needed a summary & hook to get me read/>Let’s/>This
...more
Katharine (Ventureadlaxre)
The story starts with our main character, Risuko, called that for her affinity for climbing (Risu means squirrel in Japanese), playing with her sister amongst the trees. Risuko also means ‘child of the law’, which is fitting for a child who is said to bring victory back to her disgraced family, of whom we learn more about as the story progresses. Japan has been devastated by a century of civil war, but Risuko lives rurally and only knows of her own family troubles until her life takes an unexpec ...more
Jaime
Dec 16, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Risuko was quick-paced, fun to read and very interesting. I loved the setting. Japan is so interesting and so beautiful. The political talk and history was good. I liked how important and strong women were portrayed in the book. Maybe I would've liked a little more world-building or explanations for the surroundings, but I liked it nonetheless. The story was action packed and the second half of the book was my favorite! So much started to happen. The little mysteries surrounding the book were wh ...more
Connie
Source: This book is available as Read Now on Netgalley.
Cost: Free

Title: Risuko: A Kunoichi Tale
Series: Seasons of the Sword #1
Author: David Kudler
Overall Rating: 3.7 stars

When I saw this book, this cover, on Netgalley as Read Now, I grabbed it almost immediately. In my head, I was picturing some kind of Japanese Mulan going on.

I love Japan, I love learning about Japan and it's culture, and this book is a really interesting read. Squirrel, or Risuko,/>/>/>/>
...more
Steve Sarner
If you had told me that I would read and enjoy a YA novel set in 15th century Japan about a girl’s journey to both her first menstrual period and training to become (what I guessed to be) a samurai warrior, I would have said you’re crazy.

Turns out, I’m crazy about this story of not an apprentice samurai but, a “kunoichi” in training. Google it.

I love discovering not just new books but altogether new genres on Goodreads. Usually it’s via friend recommendations or the magical Goodreads recommend
...more
monica ♪
description

ABOUT THE BOOK

Title: Risuko: A Kunoichi Tale
Series: Seasons of the Sword #1
Author: David Kudler
Release Date: June 15th 2016
Rating: 3 out of 5 Stars
Cliffhanger: Not really
Writing Style: First Person, Female POV
HEA: (view spoiler)


MY REVIEW

One word to describe this book: unexpected.

When I saw this book on NetGalley, the title really captivated me. Although I didn't really read this kind of book, in fact I never read a book with this genre before, but I just knew that I had to read this.
Without any second thoughts, I requested it from NetGalley immediately.

I love Japan so mPOV
really
WritingStars
2016
Kudler
Release#1
Tale
...more
Yasamin Seifaee
I received a free copy of this book via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

DAMN! DAVID KUDLER, WHAT HAVE YOU DONE TO ME! I ALREADY WANT THE SECOND BOOK!

I really liked this book! From the beginning to the end! The concept, the world, the writing style, everything!

But one thing was missing and it was the plot. And i guess that i why i gave this book 4 stars. I mean i was reading this book not knowing what we were seeking?!

The first half of the book's p
...more
Miriam
Crosspost: TheReadingBelle.com

This book is available as Read Now on NetGalley.

When I saw this book on NetGalley, I just knew I had to pick it up! The synopsis is what won me over and I love the cover.

This book was an excellent introduction to the series, it was very entertaining. Risuko is sold from her family, not out of spite, but for Risuko’s own good. Along the way, Risuko learns about the politics in her country, and there are hints of the war to come.

Risuko focuses on the journe/>/>This
...more
Nicole
Jun 17, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Risuko!!! First things first: I received an ARC of this book through NetGalley.
The book came out june 15th and I really recommend this book.
 
Look at that another review. I'm on a roll today. Wohohoooo!!!!
 
Book summary:
Kano Murasaki, called Risuko (Squirrel) is a young, fatherless girl, more comfortable climbing trees than down on the ground. Yet she finds herself enmeshed in a game where the board is the whole nation of Japan, where the pieces are armies, move
...more
Michelle Kidwell
Risuko

A Kunoichi Tale

by David Kudler

Stillpoint Digital Press

Independent Book Publishers Association (IBPA), Members' Titles

Middle Grade, Teens & YA

Pub Date 15 Jun 2016

I was given a copy of Risuko through the publisher and their partnership with netgalley in exchange for my honest review:

Totomi Japan, 1570 AD

Everyone puts their hope in Risuko her family is in disgrace but all Risuko wan
...more
Marium
Feb 19, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Thank you so much to NetGalley and David Kudler for the advanced reading copy!

*applauds loudly* This was a wonderful book!
Strong female characters, a wildly immersive setting, and a nice flowing read. What more could I possibly ask for?

I loved Risuko, and all her supporting cast, which was 90% women (yay!!), especially the mysterious Meiko and Risuko's friend Emi.

A setting in Japan is something that's not used a lot, so I was very excited to read about it. I'm not an exper
...more
Brenda A
Jun 09, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley
I loved this. It's a fairly slow moving novel for a good chunk of the narrative; much of the focus is on the every day lives that Risuko and her compatriots live. This can get tedious for some. I, however, have not read many novels that take place in Japan so I loved the look into what their lives were like. I am operating under the assumption that the author did his homework; as I haven't actually studied Japan all that much, I can't say for sure whether the book is historically accurate or not ...more
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154 followers
David Kudler is a writer and editor living just north of the Golden Gate Bridge with his wife, actress, teacher, and author Maura Vaughn, their author-to-be daughters, and their apparently non-literary cats.

He recently published Risuko: A Kunoichi Tale, a young-adult historical adventure novel set in sixteenth century Japan, and is hard at work on the sequel, Bright Eyes.

Since 1999, he
...more

Other books in the series

Seasons of the Sword (3 books)
  • Schools for Gifted Youngsters Monthly Headmistresses' Dinner
  • Bright Eyes (Seasons of the Sword #2)
“The blossoms fall just once each winter, yet in our memories, they fall every day.” 15 likes
“I tell yeh, Bright-eyes. Men and women? A bloody mess. Every time.” 10 likes
More quotes…