Sunday 8 July 2018

Carole's Sunday Review: Trial on Mount Koya

Author: Susan Spann
Title: Trial on Mount Koya (Shinobi Mystery #6)
Genre: Historical Fiction, Murder Mystery
Publication: ebook
Where I Got It: My shelf (Given to me by the author/publisher for my honest and unbiased opinion)

Master ninja Hiro Hattori and Jesuit Father Mateo head up to Mount Koya, only to find themselves embroiled in yet another mystery, this time in a Shingon Buddhist temple atop one of Japan's most sacred peaks.

November, 1565: Master ninja Hiro Hattori and Portuguese Jesuit Father Mateo travel to a Buddhist temple at the summit of Mount Koya, carrying a secret message for an Iga spy posing as a priest on the sacred mountain. When a snowstorm strikes the peak, a killer begins murdering the temple's priests and posing them as Buddhist judges of the afterlife--the Kings of Hell. Hiro and Father Mateo must unravel the mystery before the remaining priests--including Father Mateo--become unwilling members of the killer's grisly council of the dead.

This is the 6th book in the series. I have really enjoyed this series so far. I have not read the first three books of the series...I really must find them and read them one day. 

This would do okay as a stand-alone, but there is a lot of references to the previous book so I would encourage at least reading the 5th book. In this adventure, Hiro and Father Mateo travel to a Buddhist temple on Mount Koya. During their stay there, murder happens and they become entrusted to solve it. They really can't go anywhere without this happening to them I swear! Things become more complex when other murders around the temple start happening. Who did it and why? 

The mystery was good! I had my guess and I was wrong. Kuddos! I honestly did not expect the murder AT all. However, after Hiro explains did seem obvious. 

As per usual, I like our crew. I like Hiro even more because of his dedication to that dang cat. It is honestly cute and very honorable. Father Mateo is such a good soul. He is still so clueless in some aspects even though he has lived in Japan for years now. He means no harm, but he sometimes forgets where he is at. 

The story was waaaaaaaay slower than previously. They are stuck on this mountain so we missed some of the usual political mystery as well. It took me longer than normal to get into this story. It felt like a bridge to the next book. I am excited to see what happens next. So yes, not as good as the previous two books, but it was necessary for the next book to happen. 

A good mystery, but the story was not as good as the others overall. Much slower and missing that political drama/mystery from the previous ones. I am excited to see what happens next! I really need to read the other two books before this next one comes out...maybe I'll just bite the bullet and buy them since I cannot find them at libraries. -_- I'll stamp this with 3 stars. 


  1. Slow stories put me to sleep.

    1. Me too, but I was able to push through and it got better

  2. I love the idea of the historical Japan aspect to this series. Such a fascinating place, especially at that time. Have you read the Jacob De Zoet book by authors-name-escapes-me? Amazing depictions of closed Japan!

    1. I haven't! But I'm sure I'd love it! I love Japan.

  3. These days, when a story is slow moving, it causes me to lose interest and DNF. It looks like there were some great parts in the story though, Carole. Hugs and Happy Monday! RO

    1. yesss those parts kept me going. And Happy belated Monday!



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