Flowers by Night (Paperback)
Flowers by Night is a vivid, meticulously researched novel that depicts unconventional lives during the first half of the 19th century in Edo-the city that would become Tokyo-a city wracked by frequent natural disasters, but where one can find bawdy, thrilling entertainment of every kind. Love affairs between men are completely accepted in Edo, even among men married to women, but low-ranking samurai Uchida Tomonosuke has never pledged himself to another man. Until one day he accidentally crosses paths with a beautiful blind masseur who challenges everything he thought he knew about love between men. Ichi is a member of the Todoza, the guild of blind men, who are trained in massage and music. The Todoza taught Ichi how to be independent and self-sufficient, but he's still at the very lowest rungs of society. For the samurai and the masseur to be together, it will mean not only crossing class lines and negotiating Tomonosuke's unhappy wife, but also surviving earthquake, fire and famine. Step into a world in which the gay-straight binary doesn't exist, where androgyny in both men and women is celebrated. This thoroughly researched historical novel presents a realistic, deeply moving view of samurai, geisha, Japanese culture, and disability. It's also a steamy, explicit gay love story that knowingly bends the m-m romance genre.