The Peony Lantern

by Frances Watts

On Sale: 20/07/2015


About the Book

The spellbinding new historical novel from multi-award-winning Australian author Frances Watts

Ages 12+

When Kasumi leaves her remote village for the teeming city of Edo, her life is transformed. As a lady-in-waiting in a samurai mansion she discovers a rare talent for art and falls in love with a young samurai. How could she ever return to the life of a simple mountain girl?

But Kasumi must set aside her own concerns. Her country is on the brink of change and Edo is simmering with tension. And her mistress has a dangerous secret-a secret that Kasumi is gradually drawn into...

Set against the vivid backdrop of nineteenth-century Japan, THE PEONY LANTERN is a powerful story of art, love and friendship, and finding your own path.

Ages 12+


∗∗∗Shortlisted in the 2016 NSW Premier's Literary Awards∗∗∗

'This masterfully written and lyrical novel challenges the tenets of the times and a woman's role in enlightening and thoroughly satisfying read.' Judges' comments, 2016 NSW Premier's Literary Awards

'Lyrical, fascinating and evocative, Frances Watts' work is always extraordinary' Jackie French, bestselling author of TO LOVE A SUNBURNT COUNTRY

'The beauty of Watts' writing leads us through an exciting narrative, the mystery's solution only revealed at the end ... Destined to be enjoyed by anyone over the age of 12 and bound to be a favourite to be shared within a class, an added advantage is its 'usefulness' as a text aptly aligned to the new English curriculum. Captivating.' BUZZWORDS BOOKS

'Watts writes with sympathy and appreciation of Japan and the Japanese people. Her strongly delineated characters and lyrical descriptions of place inform a book which will engage the thoughtful reader.' READING TIME

Product Details

  • ISBN: 9780733332920
  • ISBN 10: 0733332927
  • Imprint: ABC Books - AU
  • On Sale: 20/07/2015
  • Pages: 304
  • List Price: 16.99 AUD
  • Age: From 12 years
  • BISAC1: Children's, Teenage & educational / Historical fiction (Children's - Teenage)


Frances Watts was born in Switzerland and grew up in Australia. Her bestselling picture books include Goodnight Mice! (illustrated by Judy Watson), the winner of the 2012 Prime Minister's Award for Children's Fiction; 2006 CBC Honour Book Kisses for Daddy (ill. David Legge); and 2008 Children's Book Council of Australia award-winner Parsley Rabbit's Book about Books (ill. David Legge). The Raven's Wing, set in Ancient Rome, and The Peony Lantern, set in nineteenth-century Japan, are her first middle grade/YA novels.

More about the author

Author Events

Saturday, December 9

Frances Watts @ Christmas event at Berkelouw by Frances Watts will be featured on/at:

Other Works by Frances Watts

Captain Crabclaw's Crew

by Frances Watts

Goodnight, Mice!

by Frances Watts

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