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In Edo period Japan, a strange new disease called the Redface Pox has begun to prey on the country's men. Within eighty years of the first outbreak, the male population has fallen by seventy-five percent. Women have taken on all the roles traditionally granted to men, even that of the shogun. The men, precious providers of life, are carefully protected. And the most beautiful of the men are sent to serve in the shogun's Inner Chamber...
Yoshimune has secured her place in history as a cunning and capable ruler, but the time has come for her to officially declare an heir. Many in her court hope she will pass over her oafish older daughter Ieshige in favor of the urbane Munetake. Yoshimune has never been one to bow to convention, but this time the future of her country is at stake!
Reads R to L (Japanese Style) for mature audiences.
Fumi Yoshinaga is a Tokyo-born manga creator who debuted in 1994 with Tsuki to Sandaru (The Moon and the Sandals). Yoshinaga has won numerous awards, including the 2009 Osamu Tezuka Cultural Prize for Ooku, the 2002 Kodansha Manga Award for her series Antique Bakery, the 2006 Japan Media Arts Festival Excellence Award for Ooku. She was also nominated for the 2008 Eisner Award for Best Writer/Artist.