story of how one man's consuming passion for dogs saved a legendary
breed from extinction and led him to a difficult, more soulful way of
life in the wilds of Japan's remote snow country
Martha Sherrill introduces us to a world that Americans know very
little about -- the snow country of Japan during World War II.
In a mountain village, we meet Morie Sawataishi, a fierce individualist
who has chosen to break the law by keeping an Akita dog hidden in a
shed on his property.
During the war, the magnificent and intensely loyal Japanese hunting
dogs are donated to help the war effort, eaten, or used to make fur
vests for the military. By the time of the Japanese surrender in 1945,
there are only sixteen Akitas left in the country. The survival of the
breed becomes Morie's passion and life, almost a spiritual calling.
In beautiful prose that is a joy to read, Martha Sherrill opens up the
world of the Dog
Man and his wife, providing a profound look at what it is
to be an individualist in a culture that reveres conformity -- and what
it means to live life in one's own way, while expertly revealing Japan
and Japanese culture as we've never seen it before.
An Uncommon Life on a Faraway Mountain
by Martha Sherrill