Fantasy writer Travis Heermann (The Ivory Star) brings thirteenth-century Japan to life in Heart of the Ronin, the first installment of a trilogy.
Ken’ishi is just seventeen years old at the time of his parents’ mysterious death. He dreams of someday training with a master who will help him become a samurai.
Traveling with Silver Crane, a sword that belonged to his father, and a dog named Akao, Ken’ishi begins his adventure after he defeats a policeman in a duel and must flee. Just when he thinks he has escaped trouble, he saves Kazuko, the daughter of an influential lord, from a group of bandits. On their journey home, they fall in love, only to discover upon their return that she has been promised to a powerful samurai lord.
Forced to flee once again, he goes on a hunt to discover his past while fighting off warriors and demons, never forgetting that there is a bounty on his head. Will he find out if his father really was a samurai—and why the sword he wields seems to be infused with magic?
Written while the author lived in Japan, Heart of the Ronin combines historical fiction with fantasy to keep readers guessing what Ken’ishi will encounter next in Heerman’s mystical universe. Publishers Weekly says it best: “Numerous tantalizingly unresolved plot threads will have readers anxiously awaiting the second installment in this gripping tale of ill-fated love, betrayal and destiny.”