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Removed (The Nogiku Series) (Volume 1) Paperback – September 11, 2013

4.7 out of 5 stars 55 customer reviews
Book 1 of 5 in the Nogiku Series

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Editorial Reviews

From the Author

This is a full-length novel at 105,000 words.
REMOVED is written in first person present tense.
I'd love for you to read the excerpt before purchasing! Just click on LOOK INSIDE above the book cover.

If you're a bookstore owner, and want to carry this title in your store, please contact S. J. Pajonas at spajonas.com/contact

From the Inside Flap

Here's what readers on Goodreads are saying about REMOVED, the first book in the Nogiku Series:

"If you are afraid of Science Fiction, this is the book for you!"

"I couldn't put it down, but more importantly, it made me think."

"This book/series changed my life."

"I'm not usually one for Sci-Fi, but this was great. Just enough to be interesting, but not so much to be 'way' out there."

"This book is definitely worth the read, I could hardly put it down in the 2 days it took me to read it and over a week later, I'm still thinking about all the characters."

"It is full of surprises. The book unfolds slowly at first, but becomes more gripping as suspenseful as it goes."

REMOVED "explodes in a final action scene worthy of the cinema."

And much more! This New Adult Science Fiction Romance will make you fall in love with Japan and all of its cultures and traditions, from kimonos, sake, and swords to romance, sex, and secrets.

Want the Kindle version too? REMOVED is part of the Amazon MatchBook program!
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Product Details

  • Series: The Nogiku Series
  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Onigiri Press (September 11, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1940599032
  • ISBN-13: 978-1940599038
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.7 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (55 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,628,195 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
It took me a while to get into this book and not until about a third of the way through did I finally become engaged in the story. In fact, I almost gave up on it. I'm glad I didn't though as once it grabbed me, I couldn't put it down.

I've always had a fascination for Japanese culture which is one of the reasons I persevered. I thought the characters were generally well drawn, especially Sanaa. The plot, as mentioned above, dragged a bit for me as I felt too much time was spent on the romance and sword fighting training, and it all felt a bit direction-less until there were hints of Sanaa's true identity.

Another reason for the 3 stars were the constant Japanese expressions and terms. Yes, there was a Japanese glossary at the end of the book but it really interrupted the flow of the story to have to flip to that glossary and then back to the plot again, so I gave up after a while and so lost some of the meaning of the conversations.

I liked this book well enough to get the next in the series and will see how that goes.
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Format: Kindle Edition
Removed is an incredibly unique dystopian novel that is steeped in Japanese culture. I read a blog post where the reviewer was just raving about this series, and I just knew I needed to pick it up. I’m so glad I did!!

The book takes place in a futuristic version of Earth where global warming has ravaged the world and killed off much of the population. People have been living in domes, but they have been working toward relocating to another planet to start again. The book follows Sanaa who learns that she has a unique role to play in this new colonization.

What I loved:

The unique setting.
This book was set in a dystopian world where the environment has been compromised so greatly that the remaining world population is living in a series of connected domes to protect them from the elements. Because the Japanese had the advanced technologies necessary for the development of these domes, much of the population is Japanese and Japanese language and culture have become a major influence in society. I found the insights into Japanese culture extremely interesting – it’s obvious that Pajonas has a great love and respect for the culture and that she is very knowledgeable on it. I loved seeing how this culture was integrated into the futuristic society and the influences that it had. This setting was incredibly unique and definitely my favorite part of the book! (Just a note – some Japanese words and phrases are used and not really explained, but I didn’t find it hard to infer their meanings most of the time.) I also loved the futuristic elements (like insta-wash clothes – with I had a device that could accomplish that!).

Strong heroine.
Sanaa is a complex character. In certain situations she was unsure of herself, so she came off as a bit timid.
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Format: Kindle Edition
I received a copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion.

I almost passed on reading what turned out to be the best book I have read this year!!! Honestly, I read the summary in a message for a Read It, Review It for our book club and wasn't interested. There were 20 copies available and only 5 people had signed up to review. That made me sad for the author, so I signed up. I started the book the night I received it, and before I knew it, it was past midnight! I was 40% into the book and forcing myself to stop reading so I would be able to get up in the morning for work. Sometimes I get myself in trouble by leading with my heart, but this time I hit the jackpot!!

This story has a little bit of everything and in perfect amounts. There is mystery, suspense, murder, love, friendship, and family. There are so many wonderful characters in this book. They are all so well written and developed. I felt like they were people I really knew. The scenery and descriptions in the story were written so well I could close my eyes and picture everything perfectly. I was afraid that it was going to be too much since the story is very Japanese oriented, containing a glossary in the back of the book. I tried to use it but found it distracting to move back and forth in the story. However, I found that I didn't really need it. Most of the time I could catch the basic meaning from the story. The description of buildings, clothing, etc. was done very nicely...just enough to give you a good image.

The heroine, Sanaa, is the absolute best heroine I have read. Ever. She is smart, strong, sweet, and brave. She isn't perfect. She freaks out a bit, just like anyone would, when she learns about who she really is and as she is thrown into certain situations.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Removed is a unique fusion of the modern and traditional. I relished the artful way this story was put together--from the martial arts and sword fighting, to the futuristic dome world of Japan--this elegantly told sci-fi tale is a treat for readers who crave a decadent dollop of culture atop their stories du jour.

20-year-old, Sanaa, is a sweet, but sassy protagonist. Naive in some ways, but far from ignorant. Throughout the story her personality is painted in such a way, that envisioning her is effortless.
And while Sanaa is a delightful character, by the end of the book, she kicks total butt. My kinda girl. Having been orphaned very young, she was raised by her aunties--another element I thought was done well by incorporating a diverse family unit that I'm positive will be even more common in the future--and is about to learn the secret of her parents and who she is meant to become. Her growth by the end of the story is one worth cheering for.

I don't want to give too much away, but I'll say the plot offers some nice surprises, while a side dish of romance is served alongside it. Which brings me to Sanaa's love interest, Jiro. *sigh* He was a refreshing change. Skilled, clever, and down to earth. Did I mention his crazy cool tattoos? Yep, he's got them.

Have you noticed all my food metaphors? That's because after reading this book I've got food on the brain! Pajonas' brief but thoughtful descriptions of the Japanese cuisine left my mouth watering. Bento box, anyone? Yum!

And the fabrics and fashion? *swoon* One of my favorite parts of visiting Asia (besides the food) is all the lush silks and detailed embroidery. Pajonas does not disappoint by leaving these out.
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