Dale Furutani is the first Asian American to win major mystery writing awards. He's a third generation Japanese American (a Sansei), born in Hilo, Hawaii, on December 1, 1946.
His family is originally from Suo-
Dale’s clan is the Matsudaira, which was a branch of the Tokugawa Shogunate family, so there is some speculation that the women and children in the family being set adrift in a boat may be related to the Meiji Revolution and the overthrow of the Tokugawa Shogunate, but there is no definitive answer to this mystery. Note: In Japan a clan included people of all classes, from peasants to samurai to nobles, so being a member of the Matsudaira clan does not denote any particular social rank.
His grandfather grew up on the island to be a fisherman. He was exceptionally tall
for the Japanese of that era (almost six-
Dale's mother was at Pearl Harbor during the infamous attack on December 7, 1941. She was at a church camp over the harbor, and could see the attack unfold below her. During the war she worked for the American Red Cross in Honolulu.
When he was five, Dale was adopted by John Flanagan when John married his mother. The family moved to California and there he met with racial prejudice for the first time, as he was virtually the only Asian in his school.
Dale went to California State University, Long Beach, where he received a degree
in Creative Writing, and UCLA, where he received an MBA in Marketing and Information
Systems. He worked his way through undergraduate school writing articles and serving
as a contributing editor for various magazines. He’s had over 250 articles published,
as well as three non-
Dale started writing book-
In 1998 he launched a second mystery series, set in 1603 Japan and featuring a ronin (masterless samurai) as the detective. The first book in the series was Death at the Crossroads. Jade Palace Vendetta was the second book in the series and it received a coveted starred review in Publisher's Weekly. Kill the Shogun, the third book in the series, was on the Los Angeles Times Fiction Bestseller list.
Dale has been honored as an Asian American author as well as a mystery writer. He
has been a speaker at the Japanese American National Museum, the Wing Luke Asian
Museum, the U.S. Library of Congress (three times), the Pacific Asia Museum, the
Los Angeles Times Festival of Books, and several conferences and universities. He
has also been the subject of a half-
For over 30 years, Dale has owned a small consulting company that specializes in the automotive industry. His many clients have included Nissan USA, Nissan Japan, Subaru, J.D. Power and Associates, Land Rover North America, Mitsubishi Motor Japan, Xerox, GE, Oracle Software, PriceWaterhouseCoopers Consulting, Cap Gemini Ernst & Young Consulting, and Isuzu. He has also served as President of a software company, Parts Marketing Manager for Yamaha Motorcycles, Director of Information Technology for Nissan USA and the CIO of an Internet company.
Dale has been married over 40 years, and he and his wife Sharon live in the Pacific Northwest, near Seattle. He has spent extensive time in Los Angeles, Portland, Tokyo and Las Vegas. While living in Los Angeles, he and his wife were honored by the City of Los Angeles for their efforts to preserve and protect Silver Lake Reservoir. In 2000, Dale was chosen as one of the “44 Faces of Diversity” by the City of Los Angeles and the Los Angeles Convention Bureau. His face appeared on street banners throughout the City, including the Los Angeles Airport, Olvera Street, and Westwood.
Around 2001, while living in Japan, Dale became ill with the first of several major health problems, including serious infections, peritonitis, various operations, and cancer. He stopped writing for several years while his health improved. Finally, in 2012, he was able to complete a new book, The Curious Adventures of Sherlock Holmes in Japan, which is available on both the Kindle reader and in trade paperback. All his prior novels are also available on the Kindle reader.