Margi Preus is the author of the acclaimed novels West of the Moon, Heart of a Samurai, and Shadow on the Mountain. She also writes and co-writes plays, sketches, and adaptations for theater. The Bamboo Sword (Amulet Books) is her latest novel. Set in 1853 in Japan, this novel follows Yoshi, a Japanese boy who dreams of someday becoming a samurai, despite his birth to the servant class. He is taken up by Manjiro, the protagonist of Preus’s Heart of a Samurai, and becomes his servant and secret watchdog. Meanwhile, Commodore Matthew Perry and his USS Susquehanna squadron of steamships arrive in Edo Bay demanding “diplomatically” that Japan open its ports to foreign trade. Aboard the commodore’s flagship is a cabin boy, Jack, who becomes separated from his American companions while on shore. When he and Yoshi cross paths, they set out on a grand adventure to get Jack back to his ship before he is discovered by the shogun’s samurai.