SONG AND STORIES OF THE "KOJIKI" as retold by Yoko Danno, illustrated by Horaku Nakamura. Tokyo/Ontario: Ahadada Books, 2008, 162 pp. $14.95 (paper)

The "Kojiki (Record of Ancient Matters)" is Japan's oldest extant chronicle — a collection of events from the mythological age up to the times of the Empress Suiko (reigned 593-628). It was supposedly compiled in 712, though the only surviving manuscript is a 1372 copy.

The compiler, O-no-Yasumaro, a court official working under the authority of the imperial family, stated that all other versions of genealogical records and anecdotal documents were false and that "unless these falsehoods are amended right now, the truth will before long be lost."