Clouds above the Hill, a long-time best-selling novel in Japan, is now translated into English for the first time. An epic portrait of Japan in crisis, it combines graphic military history and highly readable fiction to depict an aspiring nation modernizing at breakneck speed. Acclaimed author Shiba Ryotaro devoted an entire decade of his life to this extraordinary blockbuster, which features Japan's emergence onto the world stage by the early years of the 20th century.
Volume three finds Admiral Togo continuing his blockade of Port Arthur. Meanwhile, a Japanese land offensive gains control of the high ground overlooking the bay as the Russians at last call for a ceasefire. However, on the banks of the Shaho River, the Japanese lines are stretched, but the Russian General Kuropatkin makes a decision to flank the troops to the left and in doing so encounters Akiyama Yoshifuru's cavalry.
Anyone curious as to how the "tiny, rising nation of Japan" was able to fight so fiercely for its survival should look no further. Clouds above the Hill is an exciting, human portrait of a modernizing nation that goes to war and thereby stakes its very existence on a desperate bid for glory in East Asia.
Shiba Ryotaro (1923-1996) is one of Japan's best-known writers, famous for his direct tone and unflinching depictions of war. He was drafted into the Japanese Army, served in the Second World War, and subsequently worked for the newspaper Sankei Shimbun. He is most famous for his numerous works of historical fiction. Translated by Juliet Winters Carpenter Edited by Phyllis Birnbaum