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Kuroshio - The Blood of Foxes


The Blood of Foxes

By Terry Watada
Categories: British Columbia, Fiction, Canada, BIPOC, Asian Literature
Paperback : 9781551522333, 272 pages, 2007
Read Excerpt (PDF)


Kuroshio, meaning "black current," is the name given to the Pacific Ocean current that Japanese immigrants believe brought them safely to a new life in North America. In this vividly imagined novel based on a true story that spans decades and continents, Terry Watada explores the dark reaches of Issei, or Japanese immigrant, life in Vancouver prior to World War II.

An Issei woman arrives on the west coast from Japan as a picture bride--marrying a fellow Japanese immigrant whom she has never met before--but soon her dreams and expectations of a lavish life in a new land are crushed by the grim reality of a loveless marriage and an impoverished existence. Before long, she becomes desperate to escape the clutches of the law after committing a heinous crime, which leads her to become inextricably involved with ruthless Issei crime boss Etsuji Morii and his underground gang. Full of unexpected twists and flashes of narrative colour, Kuroshio: The Blood of Foxes explores the fascinating history of Japanese-Canadian immigrant life in the first half of the twentieth century with all the intrigue and style of a modern-day murder mystery.


A continuously engrossing read.
-Nikkei Voice

- Nikkei Voice

The novel at its best recalls the works of Dashiell Hammett or James M. Cain.
-Publishers Weekly

- Publishers Weekly

Told in a literary style that draws from Watada's background as an historian and poet, Kuroshio takes readers across continents and generations in search of the truth of the immigrant experience.
-Fast Forward (Calgary)

- Fast Forward

Kuroshio is many layered and written in a poetic style that is a sheer joy to the senses; it is both a complex and compelling murder mystery and a grim multi layered psychological drama as duelling civilizations clash and individuals are caught between their naïve dreams and harsh reality.
-Canadian Immigrant

- Canadian Immigrant

Murder, sexual intrigue, and broken dreams combine to create an intense depiction of Vancouver's Second World War-era Japanese-Canadian community.
-Quill & Quire

- Quill & Quire

Seamlessly blends aspects of Canadian history with a fictional tale of survival and mobster drama.

- Nexus

A historically insightful first novel about the lesser-known history of Vancouver's Japanese Canadian community prior to its destruction by the enforced evacuation and internment of its citizens. Terry Watada is a superb storyteller.
-Jim Wong-Chu, Asian Canadian Writers' Workshop

- Jim Wong-Chu