A killer. A traitor. A deadly war that could take their love and their lives…
Ruling the Kyoto yakuza makes Nao Murata a perpetual target, especially with the Koreans encroaching into their territory. An attempt on his life at his mafia headquarters crosses a line. Setting up his beloved ally Aki as the would-be assassin crosses another. Nao knows the only way to save his friend’s life is to sever their growing bond and force Aki to fake his own death…
But Aki Hisona refuses to stay dead. Determined to expose Nao’s would-be killer and save the man he loves, Aki goes deep undercover in the Korean underworld. But when he’s asked to prove his loyalty, he risks becoming caught in a web of his own lies…
With Aki gone and the Kyoto mafia in grave danger, Nao fears his trust in others could be fatal.
Will Nao and Aki find the assassin in time, or will Nao’s rule end in bloody chaos?
Rating: 5 stars
*I received this novel for free in exchange for an honest review*
When Aki is framed for an attempt on Nao’s life, he suddenly finds himself exiled from his home and the man he loves. Determined to find a way back, he reluctantly joins the Blood Magnolias in the hopes of discovering the real traitor in Nao’s midst. Yet to do this will take Aki to some darker places, perhaps a lot darker than he was prepared for.
Flowers of Flesh and Blood is the fifth instalment of The Yakuza Path series. It starts off fast-paced and is a thrill-ride of action and emotion from the beginning. Aki’s sudden departure from the family and Nao’s life is swift and gut-wrenching. Left alone Nao struggles even more with his inner demons and responsibilities as Godfather. For Aki, the loss is just as profound. He has nowhere to go, and it is his love for Nao that keeps him focused throughout the novel. His character just keeps going from strength to strength whilst retaining the qualities that make him who is he is.
The action and violence is as unflinchingly written as it is throughout the series. The gritty realism contrasts against the more tender moments between characters, and this serves to create a deeper connection between them somehow.
The series keeps getting better and better, and I am excited to see where the next book takes Nao, Aki and their love.