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Lady Joker, Volume 1

Best Seller
Lady Joker, Volume 1 by Kaoru Takamura
Hardcover $28.95
Apr 13, 2021 | ISBN 9781616957018

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  • Apr 13, 2021 | ISBN 9781616957018

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  • Apr 13, 2021 | ISBN 9781616957025

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An Amazon Best of the Month Pick for April 2021

Praise for Lady Joker

“Hinging on a kidnapping plot, Takamura’s prismatic heist novel offers a broad indictment of capitalist society.”
The New York Times

“Mysterious and multilayered, [Lady Joker] gives readers extortion and kidnapping as it critiques the dark corners of Japanese society and the human experience.”
Ms. Magazine

“A novel that portrays with devastating immensity how those on the dark fringes of society can be consumed by the darkness of their own hearts.”
—Yoko Ogawa, author of The Memory Police

“[Lady Joker] earns frequent comparisons to L.A. Confidential in its epic scope . . . Despite the enormous size of the work, there are enough turning gears and ratcheting tension to stay committed to finishing this one—and then salivating for its massive sequel.”

“Impressive, very large-scale crime(-and-more) novel of post-war Japan . . . Lady Joker is anything but your usual mystery.”
—The Complete Review

“Through the working class, and executives, the police force and media, author Kaoru Takamura brings to her readers a Japan which is complicated and often corrupt. The disenfranchised working class who commit a crime seem no better (or worse) than the corporate executives who commit crimes in their own, more subtle, ways.”
—Dolce Belleza

“Excellent . . . Takamura shows why she’s one of Japan’s most prominent mystery novelists.”
Publishers Weekly, Starred Review

“Takamura’s challenging, genre-confounding epic offers a sweeping view of contemporary Japan in all its complexity.”
Kirkus Reviews

“Centered around an extortion case involving a beer company, Lady Joker would ordinarily be categorized in the crime or mystery novel genre, yet the book deserves to be called an exemplary literary work that depicts contemporary society . . . A magnum opus . . . It requires extraordinary skill to fully depict the ambivalence of Japanese society, in all its detail. Reading Lady Joker together with James Ellroy’s American Tabloid and the drama behind the Kennedy assassination serves as an intriguing comparison. Viewing a society through the lens of a crime is like examining a disease or a corpse to get at the person: it exposes the foundations of human existence.”
—Yomiuri Newspaper  

“Using the relationship between individuals and institutions as its axis, Lady Joker attempts to depict the contemporary era in its entirety. The effort is so reckless as to be almost quixotic, but with her formidable literary talents, Kaoru Takamura accomplishes her goal to a handsome degree . . . Lady Joker is a multilayered novel that allows for many interpretations, yet its structure places it firmly within the framework of a social-awareness mystery.”
—Shosetsu Subaru Literary Magazine

A superb suspense novel with depth.”
—Shukan Bunshun (The Literary Weekly)

“Takamura’s eye for detail and storytelling prowess are astonishing . . . It’s possible to read Lady Joker in various ways—as a mystery novel, a police procedural, or a cautionary tale of corporate risk management. I read it as an exploration of the original sin of human existence . . . The depth of empathy readers will feel for this book’s characters directly corresponds with the author’s insight on the intersections of human existence.”
—Ushio Magazine

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