Tokoyo, the Samurai’s Daughter

Written by Faith L. Justice Kayla Gilliam (illus.)
Review by Viviane Crystal

Tokoyo is not your average 14th-century Japanese girl. She rejects learning sewing, embroidering, painting and cooking to prepare for a married life. Instead her father humors her by teaching her how to read, write, learn samurai fighting skills, and prepare her mind and body with martial arts practices. In her work with the Ama, divers who search for treasure and food, she earns great respect for her ability to remain underwater longer than any of her peers.

However, Tokoyo’s world comes to a startling crash when her father is accused of being dishonorable by a dishonest minister of the local Shogun. This is the story of how Tokoyo travels to the island where her father has been exiled and kills a dragon associated with a curse on the residents of the island. No spoilers here. The story is accompanied by vivid cartoon images of the progressing action which young readers are sure to eagerly enjoy. Tokoyo, The Samurai’s Daughter is a dramatic, adventurous story reflecting the legends and tales of Japan in medieval times. Thoroughly enjoyable and highly recommended!