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Lisa Countryman vanishes in Tokyo in 1980. The young U.S. Embassy official assigned to her case, Tom Hurley, is in over his head, tangled in an unsavory love affair with the wife of a CIA officer. Lisa’s best chance at being found may lie in the improbable hands of Kenzo Ota, a neurotic Japanese cop ridiculed by his peers. Worse, Lisa likely disappeared into the shadow world of Tokyo’s sex trade, where a bewildering variety of clubs cater to every imaginable male fantasy, lust, and perversion.
The mystery of Lisa’s disappearance is intertwined with the mystery of her origins as an ainoko, a half-breed. For Lisa, as with others involved in her case, alienation and belonging, love and hate, are bound up with race. Every man—guilty and innocent—who seeks her has to come to terms with his own nature and character.