Another novel of international love and intrigue by the prize-winning author of A Hundred Veils
In 1969 Japan, Emiko’s father has gone to Tokyo to support students protesting the Vietnam War–but hasn’t come back. Then suddenly her mother dies. Alone and in despair, twenty-year-old Emiko abandons her factory job to go searching for her missing father.
To survive in Tokyo, she stays at a hostel in the seedy Sanya neighborhood and takes a job as hostess in a bar where she’s required to “talk cute,” which goes against her grain.
She’s previously refused an offer to become the second wife of the rich Genji, twice her age, who had been in love with her mother, but when she’s fired and out of money, in desperation she goes to Genji’s office, hoping for a loan. Genji has something else in mind.
Emiko nearly gives up the idea of finding her father. And then she meets Juan, an American soldier recovering from a battle injury. Now she’s in love with a soldier in the war she and her father have been denouncing for years.
Uncertain Luck provides a vivid picture of the persistence of love at a time of political conflict in Japan.
“Keech writes confidently and evocatively, conjuring an authentic setting both rich with detail and a sense of atmosphere. This coming-of-age story set against 1969 Tokyo, which touches both upon Japan post-World War II, and the Vietnam War, proves fertile ground for emotional drama with hints of intrigue and romance.” —BookLife Prize
“Keech’s book presents a post–World War II Tokyo that is no longer in lockstep with America, with New Left, anti-war movements like the Beheiren offering readers a view of Japan in the 1970s many may not have considered. Emiko is a strong, independent, and clever protagonist, using her wits to try to find her father and outsmart the radicals and criminals on the edges of this new, harsher world outside Kitayama. … A vivid and unusual era and setting help this wartime love story stand out.” —Kirkus Reviews