A Dictionary of Mutual Understanding: A Novel


by: Copleton, Jackie
Format: Paperback

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Product Description In the tradition of Memoirs of a Geisha and The Piano Teacher, a heart-wrenching debut novel of family, forgiveness, and the exquisite pain of love   When Amaterasu Takahashi opens the door of her Philadelphia home to a badly scarred man claiming to be her grandson, she doesn’t believe him. Her grandson and her daughter, Yuko, perished nearly forty years ago during the bombing of Nagasaki. But the man carries with him a collection of sealed private letters that open a Pandora’s Box of family secrets Ama had sworn to leave behind when she fled Japan. She is forced to confront her memories of the years before the war: of the daughter she tried too hard to protect and the love affair that would drive them apart, and even further back, to the long, sake-pouring nights at a hostess bar where Ama first learned that a soft heart was a dangerous thing. Will Ama allow herself to believe in a miracle? Review “This impressively layered first novel never strains credulity as it explores grief and guilt amid revelations of long-buried familial secrets, destructive love affairs and more.” – The New York Times“Memoirs of a Geisha meets The Piano Teacher, in the best way.” -- InStyle.com, A December Book Club Pick “A treasure. . . . Japanese culture, family life and love are all a part of the theme Copleton explores.” — A San Diego Union-Tribune “Best Book of 2015” “Copleton's deeply moving novel offers both mesmerizing storytelling and a thoughtful probe of difficult questions about love, trust and forgiveness. Gripping, convincing and heartbreaking, though ultimately hopeful, this is an accomplished debut.” – Cleveland Plain Dealer“A fully drawn portrait of a city and a life, this novel will hold appeal for history buffs, lovers of literary fiction, and readers of high-drama romance.” – Kirkus Reviews“Journalist Jackie Copleton manages to sensitively portray Japanese culture, as well as the utter horror and devastation of August 9, 1945, from an angle often unexplored in Western writing. Characterized by heartache, memories and promise, A Dictionary of Mutual Understanding is a gripping narrative about family and loss.” – BookPage, Fiction Top Pick  “I loved this book. I don't often say that much anymore, but this one had me rapt. I read it on an airplane, and when I looked up weeping from the last several pages, my husband, alarmed, said, "What's the matter?" And I said, "This book is so beautiful."  And it is. 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. Lovely . . . an exceptional tale of a family in crisis whose lives are shattered by the bombing of Nagasaki. 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.” —Robin Oliveira, New York Times bestselling author of My Name Is Mary Sutter  “Extraordinary…Like Snow Falling on Cedars and The Reader, here is one of those rare life opportunities to look again at ourselves, and forgive our shameful past, achieved with striking style, an unflinching eye and through a clever narrative. Brava Jackie Copleton. I cannot wait to read your next novel.” —Mary-Rose MacColl, author of In Falling Snow“Iojima, Nagasaki—names of places known from war. Jackie Copleton’s debut novel delivers an impassioned story of family, loyalty and love that allows us, as she writes, 'to appreciate the human foundations' of these historic locations. It is through such intimate stories of people who have lived through war do we begin to understand the vulnerability of survival and the real meaning of peace. Following the surprising turns revealed in one woman’s remembrances—a memory made selective by loss and frailty—this story took me on an unexpected journey through Japa


Product Code: 9780143128250
ISBN: 0143128256
Publisher: Penguin Books
Publication Date: 2015-12-01
Number of Pages: 304 pages
Languages: english
Edition: No Information
Dimension: 5.87 x 0.71 x 8.43 inches
Shipping Weight: 0.79 pounds