Monday, June 17, 2013

HF Virtual Book Tours Review: The Gods of Heavenly Punishment by Jennifer Cody Epstein

Title: The Gods of Heavenly Punishment
Author: Jennifer Cody Epstein
Format: Hardcover
Publisher: W.W. Norton & Co.
Publish Date: March 11, 2013
Source: HF Virtual Book Tours

Why You're Reading This Book:
  • You're a historical fiction fan.
  • You don't mind tough subjects.
 What's the Story?:

From "In this evocative and thrilling epic novel, fifteen-year-old Yoshi Kobayashi, child of Japan’s New Empire, daughter of an ardent expansionist and a mother with a haunting past, is on her way home on a March night when American bombers shower her city with napalm—an attack that leaves one hundred thousand dead within hours and half the city in ashen ruins. In the days that follow, Yoshi’s old life will blur beyond recognition, leading her to a new world marked by destruction and shaped by those considered the enemy: Cam, a downed bomber pilot taken prisoner by the Imperial Japanese Army; Anton, a gifted architect who helped modernize Tokyo’s prewar skyline but is now charged with destroying it; and Billy, an Occupation soldier who arrives in the blackened city with a dark secret of his own. Directly or indirectly, each will shape Yoshi’s journey as she seeks safety, love, and redemption."

My Two Cents:

"The Gods of Heavenly Punishment" is a story set in both Japan and the United States during World War II. It follows many different characters, both Japanese and American, through their experiences during the war. Due to the setting and time period in this book, I'm sure you can imagine that some of the subject matter of this book is certainly heavy indeed but I can promise that if you stick it out, you'll be rewarded with a pretty good story full of interesting characters and set against several world changing events.

Each chapter follows a set of different characters although some of the characters appear in more than one chapter. All of the chapters come together in the end to tell a whole story. Because all of the stories feel very separate (some more or less than others), I kept waiting to see how they would come together, which was a tiny bit distracting.

There were many interesting characters in this book. I was especially intrigued by Hana and her daughter, Yoshi. There is a lot of mystery surrounding Hana throughout the book and I really liked putting all the pieces together to see what happened to her. Yoshi definitely fascinated me as well.

The writing in this book was really good too. Even when I was a little bit frustrated by trying to see how all of the parts were coming together, the writing definitely kept me going. I will be anxious to see where else Epstein's writing takes her.

Follow the Rest of the Tour:

Monday, June 10
Review & Giveaway at Bippity Boppity Book
Tuesday, June 11
Review at Oh, for the Hook of a Book!
Wednesday, June 12
Review at Flashlight Commentary
Thursday, June 13
Review at Book Lovers Paradise
Interview at Flashlight Commentary
Friday, June 14
Review & Interview at A Bookish Libraria
Monday, June 17
Review at A Bookish Affair
Tuesday, June 18
Guest Post & Giveaway at A Bookish Affair
Wednesday, June 19
Review at Just One More Chapter
Thursday, June 20
Review at Tiny Library
Friday, June 21
Interview & Giveaway at Oh, for the Hook of a Book!
Monday, June 24
Review at Confessions of an Avid Reader
Tuesday, June 25
Review at Kinx’s Book Nook
Review & Giveaway at So Many Precious Books, So Little Time
Wednesday, June 26
Review at Bitches with Books
Thursday, June 27
Guest Post at HF Connection
Friday, June 28
Review & Giveaway at Broken Teepee
Saturday, June 29
Review at WTF Are You Reading?
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  1. I love the cover, so I would be willing to try this one...LOL (The way I select books is certainly not a science...LOL)

  2. I do agree that it took awhile to see how all the stories were going to come together, but I loved it anyway.

  3. I passed on this tour because I was just too darn busy! But I thought the premise sounded very interesting, considering that I don't typically read books set in Asia. When it comes to WWII stories though, I find the battle in the Pacific more interesting. Looking forward to reading this one and it will go on my TBR if it isn't already there.


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