David Mitchell, The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet (Random House, 2010)

untitledInterweaving the history of the Dutch East India Company, Japan of the Shoguns and the mysteries of a Buddhist monastery, Mitchell tells a moving story of unrequited love. The upright and humourless clerk, Jacob de Zoet, is drawn into intrigue and corruption, and strives to find a way to escape while helping a fascinating women he hardly knows. The best novel I have read in a decade; a deep and challenging exploration of cultural difference and attempted communication.