In Japan, the start of April marks the beginning of the yearly cycle: new homes, new jobs, new school years, etc. It is also the time when the cherry trees bloom, exploding with pink flowers that last for a very short time, which people here regard as poetically symbolic of the bittersweet, ephemeral nature of life. Folks spend time with friends, family, and co-workers doing 花見 (hanami: cherry blossom viewing), relaxing under these lovely trees in the (sometimes) perfect weather, eating and drinking.
At our university, the start of the new year brings new teachers and students and the burst of beauty from the many cherry trees.
Praise for The Rabbit Skinners, on sale by Amazon Kindle US for 99 cents April 4-11.
“…the author artfully raises provocative questions about the fraught relationship between race and institutional power (and) there’s plenty of gripping action, cinematically depicted.” – Kirkus Reviews