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Shinju (original 1994; edition 1996)
Shinjū by Laura Joh Rowland (1994)
Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0061009504, Mass Market Paperback)
When beautiful, wealthy Yukiko and low-born artist Noriyoshi are found drowned together in a shinju, or ritual double suicide, everyone believes the culprit was forbidden love. Everyone but newly appointed yoriki Sano Ichiro.
Despite the official verdict and warnings from his superiors, the shogun's Most Honorable Investigator of Events, Situations, and People suspects the deaths weren't just a tragedy -- they were murder. Risking his family's good name and his own life, Sano will search for a killer across every level of society -- determined to find answers to a mystery no one wants solved. No one but Sano...
As subtle and beautiful as the culture it evokes, Shinju vividly re-creates a world of ornate tearooms and guady pleasure-palaces, cloistered mountaintop convents and dealthy prisons.
Part love story, part myster, Shinju is a tour that will dazzle and entertain all who enter its world.
(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:24:16 -0400)
In seventeenth-century Japan, Sano, a teacher and detective, investigates the ritual "suicide" drownings of a peasant and a noblewoman, supposed star-crossed lovers, and uncovers an intricate plot of political intrigue and murder.
(summary from another edition)
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