Review by: Morgan HobbesTaro, written by Blue Spruell, is a reimagining of several Japanese folk tales featuring a young hero named Taro. I'll admit, I'm not familiar with any of the source material, so I've no idea how close or how much this leans into the original material.
For me, this was an endearing young-adult adventure where warlords of feudal Japan are battling for control of the country. Rescued from certain death by a witch, Taro grows up with magical animals until one day, a chance occurrence puts him in good with one of the warlords.
It's packed with loads of fights waged with various Japanese weapons and martial arts. Plenty of samurai getting about, magical beings and other mythical like fantasy all rolled into a compelling tale in lovingly describe settings. It's clear the author has a love of Japan.
Narration by Steve Marvel was decent, and without knowing any Japanese, I have to assume the pronunciations of Japanese words were correct. It did strike me as an odd choice why a story filled with Japanese people and culture wasn't voiced by someone with the same heritage. As it was, I couldn't help picturing a white guy doing a Japanese accent.
In summary, this was a fun book filled with plenty of action written by someone with an obvious love of Japan and her culture.I was given this audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review. I have not let this gift affect nor influence my opinions of this audiobook and have left an honest review.