Review

The Bride's Kimono

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The tried and true amateur sleuth genre has been embellished by a
sub-genre in which the hero or heroine imparts fascinating facts on
far reaching subjects to enhance the depth of the plot while
evoking a strong sense of place or time. THE BRIDE'S KIMONO, fifth
in the Rei Shimura series by Sujata Massey, provides the armchair
traveler with a page turning plot launched in Tokyo, which then
roars through Washington, DC and Maryland, all the while giving us
a thorough yet fascinating history of the kimono and of Edo period
Japanese history.

Rei, daughter of an American socialite and a Japanese psychiatrist,
has struck out on her own in previous books to open an Asian
antiques business in Tokyo. She has gained a reputation not only as
an authority on Japanese antiquities but also has garnered a few
headlines with her rather nontraditional Japanese behavior when she
becomes embroiled in crime solving and romantic escapades with
prominent male admirers.

Rei is honored to receive an invitation to be guest lecturer at a
prestigious Washington museum and must also be the courier of a
rare collection of historic kimono. She dutifully hand carries her
priceless treasure on a plane loaded with young Japanese women on a
shopping spree tour of America. To save money out of the modest
stipend paid for her lecture, Rei stays at a tourist class Maryland
motel and shares a room with one of the passengers, Hana. The only
kimono in her possession that is mysteriously uninsured is stolen
at the same time her roommate disappears. The roommate is later
found murdered, with Rei's passport on her body. 

The plot revolves around uncovering an international antiquities
theft ring, murder, and Rei's predicament in a love triangle with
her former love, Scottish attorney Hugh Glendenning, and Japanese
playboy Takeo Kayama, both introduced in prior books.

THE BRIDE'S KIMONO is a swift and satisfying read for mystery
lovers who enjoy depth to their characters and plot. As a first
time reader of the adventures of Rei Shimura, I'm now inclined to
add her near the top of favorite series authors. Which means, of
course, catching up on Sujata Massey's backlist, including THE
FLOATING GIRL, THE FLOWER MASTER, ZEN ATTITUDE, and THE SALARYMAN'S
WIFE.

Reviewed by Roz Shea (HOST BKPG ROZ) on January 21, 2011

The Bride's Kimono
by

  • Publication Date: September 1, 2001
  • Genres: Fiction, Mystery
  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins
  • ISBN-10: 0060199334
  • ISBN-13: 9780060199333