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THE LAST CONCUBINE by Leslie Downer. London: Bantam Press, 2008, 480 pp., £12.99 (cloth)

The beautiful young Sachi grew up in the mountains of rural Japan, but she always seemed to herself more than a mere farm girl, samurai stock though she was. As the book jacket puts it: “Sachi has always felt different, her pale skin and fine features setting her apart from her friends and family.”

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