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A mother's love. A daughter's courage. A secret that will tear them apart. Longlisted for the 2016 Baileys Women's Prize for Fiction.

'Memoirs of a Geisha meets The Piano Teacher, in the best way.' InStyle

Amaterasu Takahashi has spent her life grieving for her daughter Yuko and grandson Hideo, who were victims of the atomic bomb dropped on Nagasaki in 1945.

Now a widow living in America, she believes that one man was responsible for her loss; a local doctor who caused an irreparable rift between mother and daughter.

When a man claiming to be Hideo arrives on her doorstep, she is forced to revisit the past; the hurt and humiliation of her early life, the intoxication of a first romance and the realisation that if she had loved her daughter in a different way, she might still be alive today.


Memoirs of a Geisha meets The Piano Teacher, in the best way.


An absolute must. Gripping from the first page, you'll not want to put it down.

Marie Claire

A masterfully written story of loss, hope and forgiveness.

BBC Radio 2 Book Club

Astonishingly accomplished debut . . . the graceful style and clarity of her writing make this an addictive read.

MUST READS, Daily Mail

A rich, romantic story, brimming with restrained emotion – with a twist that will take your breath away.

Sunday Mirror

An emotional page-turner

Daily Express

Extraordinary… the interweaved stories of love, loss and human failings are as captivating as any novel I have read in years.’

Eastern Daily Press

Like Snow Falling on Cedars and The Reader, here is one of those rare life opportunities to look again at ourselves, and forgive, achieved with striking style, an unflinching eye and through a clever narrative. Brava Jackie Copleton.

Mary-Rose Maccoll, author of IN FALLING SNOW

An exceptional tale of a family in crisis . . . at once intimate and sweeping, profoundly subtle and yet remarkably affecting, the story reminds the reader that public catastrophe interrupts myriad smaller, but no less devastating, private troubles, magnifying their consequences and obstructing their resolution. This is a mesmerizing, heart-wrenching story of love and regret, but ultimately, and most assuredly, the healing generosity of hope. I couldn't put it down. I read the end on an airplane, and had to hide my tears from the other passengers.

.â?â??Robin Oliveira, New York Times bestselling author of MY NAME IS MARY SUTTER

Full of delicate imagery drawing on Japanese nature and culture, this is a rich, romantic story, brimming with restrained emotion – with a twist that will take your breath away. Superb.

Sunday Mirror

This is a truly wonderful novel about the intricacies of parenting, regret, forgiveness and the exquisite pain of love

Love Reading

A gorgeous book

Sara Cox, Daily Express

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Formats & editions

  • Paperback


    July 18, 2016

    Windmill Books

    304 pages

    RRP $22.99

    Online retailers

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    • Amazon
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    Find your local bookstore at booksellers.org.au

  • EBook


    July 16, 2015

    Cornerstone Digital

    304 pages

    Online retailers

    • iBooks
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    • eBooks
    • Google Play
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