The story of full of plots within plots, characters who are more than they appear to be, and plenty of action. There is subterfuge, counter-plotting, revenge and romance.
The story was intriguing, and the plot moved along quickly, with rarely a dull moment. It's a page-turning read. I enjoyed the comparison/contrast of Japan and outside cultures, and Matsuoka went to considerable detail on clothing. Genji is a likable protaganist, who faces a number of challenges, and exhibits some character arc by the end of the story. He makes some unexpected decisions. Emily also grows in the story, and has to make some difficult choices as well.
Finally, the novel is very graphically violent. Especially involving children. So if you are sensitive to that type of thing, beware.