The Pillow Book: Series 1-11: A full-cast historical crime drama

Unabridged Audiobook

Release Date
June 2018
11 hours 12 minutes
A thriller and love story set in 10th-century Japan.

Lady Shonagon is an imperial courtesan, living at the court of the Japanese Emperor in the 10th century. When a series of disturbing thefts within the palace walls throws the court into confusion and unrest, Shonagon is appointed guide and assistant to Lieutenant Yukinari as he investigates.

Together, Shonagon and Yukinari must solve the mysteries and escalating crimes that plague the Japanese court, and their romance blossoms in the tightly enclosed world behind the high palace walls. But soon Shonagon's lover Tadanobu becomes uncomfortable with how closely they are working together...

The Pillow Book is inspired by the writings of Sei Shonagon, a poet and lady-in-waiting to the Empress of the 10th Century Japanese court. The work of the real-life Sei Shonagon consists of essays, lists, anecdotes, poems, and descriptive passages about her daily life.

This full-cast drama stars Ruth Gemmell as Sei Shonagon, with Yukinari played by Mark Bazeley in Series 1-3 and Cal Macaninch in series 4-11. Benedict Cumberbatch plays Tadanobu is Series 1.
Directed by Lu Kemp.
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Jayne S.

The book accurately creates the atmosphere of feudal Japan. Excellent production, not surprising as it was done by the BBC. Wonderful narration. This recreates the claustrophobic nature of feudal Japan, particularly the imperial court. Introspective thoughts are interspersed with events which is not to everyone's taste, especially if you want a fast paced thriller. if you love Japan and/or want to know more about the country it is a good read.

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