Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Kojiki (Kojiki, #1)” as Want to Read:
Kojiki (Kojiki, #1)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview


(Kojiki #1)

liked it 3.00  ·  Rating details ·  426 ratings  ·  118 reviews
Every civilization has its myths. Only one is true.

When eighteen year old Keiko Yamada’s father dies unexpectedly, he leaves behind a one way ticket to Japan, an unintelligible death poem about powerful Japanese spirits and their gigantic, beast-like Guardians, and the cryptic words: “Go to Japan in my place. Find the Gate. My camera will show you the way.”

Alone and afraid
Mass Market Paperback, 448 pages
Published August 2nd 2016 by Angry Robot (first published April 17th 2013)
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Kojiki, please sign up.
Popular Answered Questions
Keith Hi Mo. Sorry for the delay. This book can stand alone. Think of it like a TV series in which there's an arch, but each book is like an episode. Like D…moreHi Mo. Sorry for the delay. This book can stand alone. Think of it like a TV series in which there's an arch, but each book is like an episode. Like Doctor Who maybe? Hope this helps.


Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
liked it Average rating 3.00  · 
Rating details
 ·  426 ratings  ·  118 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of Kojiki (Kojiki, #1)
Paul O'Neill
Mar 26, 2017 rated it did not like it
What more can you ask for with a book with magic god-like figures, each with a super cool guardian in the shape of a dragon, or thunderbird? How about tell me why I should care? There is very little that is relatable in this book. We only have one 'human' in this book. The rest are all gods or dragons, or whatever.

There is not enough time spent building the world and its rules for the reader to understand. You're just thrown into the action and I still had questions about the rules of the world
K.J. Charles
Mar 29, 2018 marked it as pass
Shelves: dnf, yeah-right
Lack of internal consistency from sentence to sentence gave me whiplash. DNF at 6%.
Sherrod Wall
May 10, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Mr. Yatsuhashi has a created a work of art with his novel Kojiki. Readers are eased into the waters of his intricate universe and its hierarchy of gods, goddesses and their Guardians. In this way, Yatsuhashi creates a sense of mystery and awe as he unveils his stunning world gradually, delivering one cinematic visual after another. I found myself re-reading portions of the novel to simply savor his imagery.

His characters are built with complexities and nuances that make each of them unique and
May 15, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)
This rating reflects the review I received from anime site, Japanator.

Japanator gives Kojiki 8.5 out of 10! Calls it, "Great. Beautifully crafted; well-written, with a loving attention to detail. Among the best of its genre."

Here's the review:

Kristina Pino, May 11, 2013

A debut novel inspired by Japanese myth and anime

Kojiki is the title of an old Japanese text which attempts to explain where the islands of Japan came from. Among other things, it recounts the stories of the gods and
That Editor Chick
Jun 27, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Kojiki is a fast-paced story, filled with multiple points of veiw and colorful characters. Gripping in just the right spots with plenty of action for this kind of story.Keiko is confused by her father's last wish and takes off to Japan to discern his meaning, setting off events that could mean the end of our world. It's a non-stop rush to defeat the long-awaited Lon-Shan and Vissyus. Yatsuhashi takes you on a ride filled with Spirits and Gaurdians, Light and Dark with plenty of twists to keep yo ...more
Jul 11, 2016 rated it really liked it
I love Japanese and Asian culture, and I am a huge sucker for mythology of any culture. Kojiki tickled all my spots, beautifully written, deep world, terrific characters...great book to let your mind latch on too and absorb. I have no problems with this tale, thanks to Angry Robot for the ARC.
Willa McAllister
Feb 22, 2018 rated it really liked it
I really loved the world this author created and I thought the book was really good. I wish I had something more tangible to say, but overall a good read.
Emily Joy
Oct 04, 2017 rated it did not like it
Shelves: japan, read-in-2017
Wow. No.

I've never regretted reading a book so much as this one. I would have dnf'ed it after the first 20 pages OR LESS if I didn't feel a slight obligation to finish it for my book club.

One of my biggest issues with this book is the gimmick it uses. "Japanese fantasy" based on Shintoism. That could have been a really cool idea, except it felt like the author took everything Japanese about Shinto and Japanese myths, and threw the culture out the window. Sure, some of the characters are based in
Jul 02, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
First, I have to say that overall I really liked this story. But I do have a couple of warnings for potential readers:

One passage from Kojiki pretty aptly describes the novel: “Yui had a habit of revealing things like a veil dancer, one tantalizing piece at a time.”

If you’ve never read anything about Japanese culture before, you might not want to start with Kojiki. The beginning was a little confusing. I had to re-read a couple of passages to adequately grasp what was going on – but I think a lo
Jun 16, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
*copy from Netgalley in exchange for a review*

Kojiki is the first in a new series by Keith Yatsuhashi. It suggests a world in which some of the older forces of Japanese legend, the kami and associated myths, are real – some of them sitting behind the scenes in our modern day. They struggle to control a disaster they unleashed on the world, one which could destroy everything if it broke free. As the text opens, that disaster is straining to be unleashed.

The world is our own, familiar in many ways
Yzabel Ginsberg
(Book provided by the author through ARR #1181 in the Making Connections group, in exchange for an honest review.)

"Kojiki" is, in my opinion, quite a visual story, and would be just as suited if turned into a movie. The author wrote vidi descriptions that allowed me to picture whatever was going on clearly enough—and there was a lot going on. You may not like the story as much as I did if you're not into action-packed plots; if you are, though, then go ahead.

The story may be more geared toward a
Fiery Fantasy
Jun 26, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Keiko Yamada is an 18 year old girl, whose father dies suddenly. Her life is turned upside down when she tries to fulfil her father's dying wish of going to Japan to 'Find the Gate. My camera will show you the way'.

Armed with a one way ticket to Japan and an unintelligible death poem about powerful Japanese spirits and their gigantic, beast-like Guardians, she travels, alone and afraid to Tokyo where she experiences her father's death poem come to life.

Ancient spirits invade the city, causing ch
Yuki Fox
May 22, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

                                              4.5 Paws - It's How Legends Are Made!!

I received a lovely email from the author, read the blurb and thought – damn I need to give this a go. I love anything to do with myth and legends, and it even involves Japan – so how could I resist when it has everything!! It’s set in the modern day Japan but with ancient aspects thrown in there. Its about this young woman named Keiko, who believes that she’s just an ordinar
May 29, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy, young-adult, 2016

Review originally published on The Curious SFF Reader

I love reading about gods. They are the main reason I started a lot of series like the Malazan Book of the Fallen series by Steven Erikson or The Chronicle of the Unhewn Throne by Brian Staveley (to cite just a few): gods fascinate me. So, when I read the blurb of Koijiki, I knew that I needed to give this book a try.

Koijiki follows the story of Keiko, an eighteen years old girl who travels to Tokyo after the disapperance of her father who
Jun 13, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I would really liked to rate this book as 3 1/2 stars, but because I can't I rounded up.

I'm a fan of anything Japanese lately so when I was able to get a copy of this book to review I jumped all over it. I don't think there has been a book that had me liking so many things but feeling like I was gearing up for battle to read it. I liked the book a lot, but it took me about half the book before I entered my reading zone.

There is a ton of different characters and I had a hard time keeping track of
Jul 16, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Kojiki is the incredibly detailed and fast paced story of revenge, love and redemption. We follow Keiko, a young girl fulfilling her father’s last request:

Go to Japan in my place.
Find the Gate.
Your camera will show you the way.

With this strange request, Keiko’s whole life - her past, present and her destiny - is irrevocably changed. She stumbles upon a seemingly impossible truth: Kami –great spirit gods- exist, and they are about to enter into a battle that could destroy the world as she know
BJ Almeda
May 09, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Thanks to Keith for the Review Copy.

I have always been fond of reading books that are based on Mythology, from Greek, Roman, and Egyptian and now, I tried reading this book, Kojiki with a different type of Myth, the Japanese Mythology. Since I was a high school student, I have been a great fan of mangas, anime, and Japanese language. I told myself, why won't I try to read this book and enhance my little knowledge about Japanese Myths. Then and there after finish reading the book, I have no regr
Tammy Hall
Jan 10, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I had my reservations about this book in the beginning and thought I'm not going to be able to get in to this story I probably won't even like it I thought to myself. I could not have been more wrong! I couldn't put it down. As a matter of fact I am re-reading it right now to see what I may have missed the first time. The elements in this story just took my breath away. Every scene is so well described that you can picture it all as it plays right out in front of you off every page. Without bein ...more
Christina Campbell
"Yui wiped her forehead with the back of her hand in a futile attempt to clean away a heavy residue of dirt and sweat. “Hold on!” She drew the energy bubble in close and launched it from the platform. 'We’re going for a ride.'"

That's how author Keith Yatsuhashi opens this epic story of ancient gods, or spirits, and gigantic monsters. And what a ride it is. From the opening pages set in the modern Ginza, right through the climactic battle over Mt. Fuji, this book never slows down. It has a kineti
Danielle Young
Aug 23, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was really excited to read Kojiki. I am a big fan of Hayao Miyazaki and when I read the synopsis for Kojiki I knew that I just had to read it. And boy am I glad that I did.

Kojiki delivered on everything that I hoped it would, great action, magic, adventure, characters, mystery, and what would certainly be mind blowing special effects if it were a movie. At least the way it played out in my mind. With the way that Keith Yatsuhasi wrote this book you can't possibly imagine yourself watching the
Maggie Thom
Dec 05, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Kojiki is one of those novels you read that you won’t soon forget. It’s an intense read. You meet a lot of characters and you learn about their part in this mythical war against forces and powers beyond earth’s realm. I loved that it is set in Japan. This is not a book you will read in one sitting, there is a lot going on. Its a bit of overwhelm and lots to keep track of but keep reading as the story pulls together and takes you on an incredible journey. This is a very visual book, the author di ...more
Jul 22, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This isn't a book from a genre that I usually read, but the synopsis intrigued me and in a way reminded me a little of Middle earth.

Kojiki, is skillfully woven with lavish descriptions that enable the reader to picture in vivid detail each and every moment as you read. I did worry at the beginning whether this attention to detail would slow the pace of the story down but it didn't, in fact I would say it enhanced it for me.

The story focuses on Keiko, who has just lost her father, and as part o
3.5 stars. I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for a review.

Kojiki is a story based on Japanese mythology. I have never read any Japanese mythology so I found it quite interesting. Most authors, especially those geared toward a YA audience, seem to drag plot lines out and turn what could be just one book into at least two, so I went into this expecting it to take Keiko a good portion of the book to find the gate. I was pleasantly surprised to see that the gate is found rig
Kickin' Cricket
Jun 03, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This thrill ride of a book has it all. There is action bursting on every page. Contained within the perfectly placed pages where you slow down to catch a breath, is an abundance of heart and story. As you battle onward with the vivid characters, the origin of all this warfare unveils itself to the reader. Emotions well inside of you at the loss of innocence and the heartache of fallen friends. I am not a crier in public. I prefer to spend my tears in private, but my eyes were clouded in misty tu ...more
Jul 05, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reviewed, diversity
Well, I didn't get on with this one, you can probably tell from the rating. I finished it because I have the sequel that promises giant robots, but it was hard work all the way.

I was incredibly confused, I just could not understand what was going on. It's very fast paced and it jumps between different points of views, with lots of flashbacks.

Every page is overloaded with information and massive info dumps. There's a lot of the characters thinking, telling each other things they should really al
Dec 21, 2019 rated it did not like it
It felt endless.. the time it took me to finish this book. I also just skipped through the last pages not even reading all of it. You could also say that I did not finish it.

I was expecting more from this book, so it was a big disappointed when reading this. I could not identify at all with any of the characters. A lot of power, spirits and gods. It did not feel like a story but more like senseless fighting between spirits and gods. I did not see the sense in it at all. There was only one human
Christina Alvarez
Apr 29, 2019 rated it liked it
An interesting read. Awesome descriptions of action and location. I wish it had been longer, or broken up into two books. It threw a lot at you the whole ride through and I wasn't able to form any significant emotional attachment to any of the characters.
Otherwise, a cool concept! And I loved the focus on Japan and its culture.
Jun 04, 2017 marked it as did-not-finish
Shelves: young-adult
I think the author would have been better off with a male protagonist, because the female protagonist was.... hard for me to buy into as a person. Gave up pretty early on this, so no rating.
Ria Bridges
Apr 16, 2020 rated it did not like it
I wanted to like this book. I wanted to like it a lot. I’m a bit of a Japanophile, and so when I encounter speculative fiction with a Japanese bent, I usually am more than willing to give it a try. It seemed like it was going to be really interesting, based on the synopsis.

I didn’t like this book. In the end, it was a mess of problems, and it was a major struggle to keep going.

The first problem I had with it was the most obvious once you start getting into the meat of the story: the gratuitous J
Ben Greene
Feb 13, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: office-shelf
This was a phenomenal book! I was hooked from the beginning. The characters are deep and beautiful and the story is fascinating. Halfway through I sent in my order for the sequel!! Can’t wait to read it.
« previous 1 3 4 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Authors & Reviewers: R&R KOJIKI 4 10 Jan 14, 2014 12:03PM  
Reviewers Requested 1 4 Sep 26, 2013 06:02AM  
Making Connections: 1181. - KOJIKI by Keith Yatsuhashi 29 73 Jul 08, 2013 01:55PM  
The Friday Indie ...: Friday Indie Review, 6/7/13 12 18 Jun 07, 2013 06:42AM  
Creative Reviews: Reviewers needed: Kojiki, a fantasy based on Japanese Myth 2 11 May 09, 2013 08:36AM  

Readers also enjoyed

  • Ink & Sigil (Ink & Sigil, #1)
  • The Bone Ships (The Tide Child, #1)
  • Call of the Bone Ships (The Tide Child #2)
  • Until the End of Time: Mind, Matter, and Our Search for Meaning in an Evolving Universe
  • Harrow the Ninth (The Locked Tomb, #2)
  • Get Out of Your Own Way: A Skeptic's Guide to Growth and Fulfillment
  • Flag in Exile (Honor Harrington, #5)
  • The Roving Party
  • Legend of the Five Rings: Whispers of Shadow and Steel
  • The Tortilla Curtain
  • The Trouble with Hating You (The Trouble with Hating You, #1)
  • All Over Creation
  • The Last Hero (Discworld #27; Rincewind #7)
  • A Song of Wraiths and Ruin (A Song of Wraiths and Ruin, #1)
  • The Prettiest Star
  • Stranger in the Shogun's City: A Japanese Woman and Her World
  • Destiny: Child of the Sky (Symphony of Ages, #3)
  • So You Think You Know What's Good for You?
See similar books…
See top shelves…
Keith Yatsuhashi was born in 1965 in Boston, MA. He graduated from Northeastern University in 1989. Repped by Laura Zatz, Headwater Literary Management

Keith was a competitive figure skater for ten years, winning the U.S. National Junior Dance Championships in 1984, a bronze medal in the 1983 World Junior Figure Skating Championships, and a silver medal in 1984.

In addition to his love of writing,

Other books in the series

Kojiki (3 books)
  • Torii
  • Kokoro (Kojiki, #2)

Related Articles

There's something so special about each class of debut YA authors; after all, young adult fiction is all about the hopefulness of new...
42 likes · 3 comments
“You’re not a killer, Seirin.” Sweat coated his face, speckled his clothes. “You couldn’t kill Vissyus, and you can’t kill me.”

Seirin grinned maliciously. “A woman’s prerogative. I’ve had a very long time to think things over.”
Botua’s charred body floated out of some locked section of her mind. Her will hardened. She’d learned the cost of hesitation. Things were different now. Lon-Shan would face justice.”
More quotes…