Samurai Rising: The Epic Life of Minamoto Yoshitsune

Samurai Rising: The Epic Life of Minamoto Yoshitsune

Samurai Rising: The Epic Life of Minamoto Yoshitsune

Samurai Rising: The Epic Life of Minamoto Yoshitsune

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Minamoto Yoshitsune should not have been a samurai. But his story is legend in this real-life saga.

This epic warrior tale reads like a novel, but this is the true story of the greatest samurai in Japanese history.

When Yoshitsune was just a baby, his father went to war with a rival samurai family—and lost. His father was killed, his mother captured, and his surviving half-brother banished. Yoshitsune was sent away to live in a monastery. Skinny, small, and unskilled in the warrior arts, he nevertheless escaped and learned the ways of the samurai. When the time came for the Minamoto clan to rise up against their enemies, Yoshitsune answered the call. His daring feats and impossible bravery earned him immortality.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781607348481
Publisher: Charlesbridge
Publication date: 02/02/2016
Sold by: Penguin Random House Publisher Services
Format: eBook
Pages: 256
Sales rank: 991,310
Lexile: 950L (what's this?)
File size: 5 MB
Age Range: 12 - 17 Years

About the Author

PAMELA S. TURNER is the author of Life on Earth—and Beyond, The Dolphins of Shark Bay (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt), and the Orbis Pictus Honor Book The Frog Scientist (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt). Pamela lives in Oakland, California.

Back in college GARETH HINDS sketched legendary scenes from Yoshitsune’s life—just for fun. Today he is the creator of highly acclaimed graphic-novel adaptions of Macbeth, Romeo and Juliet, The Odyssey, Beowulf, and other classics (Candlewick). Gareth lives in Washington D.C.

Read an Excerpt

Few warriors are as famous as the Japanese samurai. We remember those beautiful swords and those fearsome helmets. We recall, with both horror and fascination, how some chose to end their own lives. But no one can understand the Japanese samurai without knowing Minamoto Yoshitsune. Yoshitsune’s story unfolds in the late twelfth century,during the adolescence of the samurai. Yes, cultures have their youth, maturity, and old age, just as people do. During Yoshitsune’s lifetime the samurai awakened. Their culture was bold, rebellious, and eager to flex its muscle. The samurai would ultimately destroy Japan’s old way of life and forge a new one using fire and steel and pain. Yoshitsune was at the very heart of this samurai rising. Hostage, runaway, fugitive, rebel, and hero, he became the most famous warrior in Japanese history. The reason is simple: Yoshitsune was the kind of man other samurai longed to be.

Table of Contents

Characters and Places vii

Map of Japan x

Introduction xiii

1 Disaster in Kyoto-Kyoto, 1160 1

2 Headless Ghosts-Kurama, 1160-1174 9

3 Samurai Boot Camp-Hiraizumi, 1174-1180 17

4 Brothers-in-Arms-Kamakura, 1180-1184 31

5 Perilous River-Kyoto, 1184 47

Map of the Battle of Uji River 49

6 Midnight Strike-Ichi-No-Tani, 1184 57

Map of the Battle of Iohi-No-Tant 59

7 Hooves Like Hailstones-Ichi-No-Tani, 1184 69

8 Into the Storm-Kyoto, Shikoku, and Yashima, 1184-1185 77

Map of the Battle of Yashima 85

9 The Dropped Bow-Yashima, 1185 93

10 The Drowned Sword-Dan-No-Ura, 1185 101

Map of the Battle of Dan-No-Ura 104

11 Assassins in the Dark-Dan-No-Ura, Kyoto, and Koshigoe, 1185 111

12 Shizuka's Song-Kyoto, Kamakura, and the Yoshino Mountains, 1185-1186 125

13 The Fugitive-Locations Unknown, 1185-1187 137

14 Feast of Arrows-Hiraizumi, 1187-1189 147

Epilogue: The Samurai Weeps 157

Acknowledgments 164

Author's Notes 166

A Note on Names 166

A Note on Dates 167

A Note on the Status of Women 167

Re-creating Yoshitsune's World 169

Time Lines 174

Yoshitsune and the Wider World 174

Major Periods of Japanese History 175

Time Line of Samurai Rising 176

Glossary of Japanese Words 178

Chapter Notes 179

Bibliography 225

Index 232

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