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Publisher's Summary

17th Century Europe, the first Japanese ever to set foot in Europe, travel to Rome on a diplomatic mission. All are baptised, but upon returning to Japan they discover that the Shoguns no longer wish to forge links with the West, nor will they tolerate the Christian religion. The Samurai who have until now reviled their adoptive religion, begin to find it may be all that is left for them. The events in the story actually took place.
©1980 Shusaku Endo; (P)2009 Audible Ltd

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What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.1 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    33
  • 4 Stars
    26
  • 3 Stars
    11
  • 2 Stars
    4
  • 1 Stars
    1

Performance

  • 4.4 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    33
  • 4 Stars
    19
  • 3 Stars
    3
  • 2 Stars
    2
  • 1 Stars
    1

Story

  • 4.3 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    29
  • 4 Stars
    20
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    9
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Sort by:
  • Overall
  • Michael
  • Oakland, CA, United States
  • 01-21-10

Well Written History Novel

The erudite writing suggests deep historical research, coupled with a sensitivity to realistic human motivations and emotions.

10 of 11 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Interesting

This was an interesting view of a part of history I knew very little about. I was surprised by the religious theme running throughout until I read moreabout Mr. Endo. To be honest, the book was a little slow and lacked action. I am sure someone would argue that the glimpse into Japanese culture and the realness was amazing, but I found my interest waning.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

It took a while for me to get into it.

I think I may have been almost halfway through when I really began to care about where this book was headed.

It's well written, well read, the story gets interesting, and the book has a greatly appreciated authentic feel about it. I just can't give it 5 stars because the whole time I wanted some action. This is absolutely not the intention of this book, and it would have helped if I had done more research before starting it.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

shusaku is my new favorite author!

this story does not hide any ugliness in the church it shows how manipulative the church can be for conversations and how even though all the churches filth the real Jesus can shine through.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Jeanie
  • NORMAN, OK, United States
  • 09-17-12

Outstanding Story!

Would you consider the audio edition of The Samurai to be better than the print version?

I always prefer print! But the audio is good.

Who was your favorite character and why?

The Padre -

What about David Holt’s performance did you like?

He did a great job!

If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

Winds of Change

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • C
  • Aspen, CO, United States
  • 04-22-10

Exceptionally odd book

I think I will "google" the author for more information. Written by a Japanese individual who is most obviously Christian...or is he/she? Is this a satirical novel? I purchased the audio book as I am interested in the Samurai culture. However, the book has only a nominal connection to the Samurai culture and in a disheartening fashion, you come to understand very little about Samurai and a lot about the torment of faith. Lots of scriptural quotes at the end..very odd, indeed.

3 of 8 people found this review helpful

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  • Overall
  • Richard
  • 02-18-11

beautifully crafted

A beautifully crafted book and audio novel. Expertly read by David Holt. Also of merit are the Preface and Epilogue, which explain the translation and context, as well as the underlying historical facts which (in part) inspired the story.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Jem
  • 08-09-16

Front page should be Jesus on the cross

What did you like most about The Samurai?

The sample

What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

Emptiness

Which scene did you most enjoy?

The sample

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

I really felt the mood of the characters as they went through mental anguish, pain and suffering from which there was no relief. <br/><br/>There were also quiet shows of compassion and comradeship.

Any additional comments?

If you are drawn by the title and cover picture this book is probably not for you; it is steeped in religious fervour and is about a zealous Catholic missionary and four peasant Samurai who reluctantly go on an epic voyage to Europe as envoys for Japan. <br/><br/>I found the sample of this book the best and happiest part of the story. It is set mostly outside of Japan and based on true events, probably why I found it so gloomy. All five face hardship and disappointment with fortitude, the missionary via his religion and the Samurai through their culture. <br/><br/>I found it very depressing and kept expecting something good to occur, even something small but for me it didn't, perhaps for a religious person (Catholic Christian) it would. <br/><br/>It is a deep book that has left a deep mark on me but if you want to learn about Japan, it's culture and the Samurai, try another book like "Shogun".

2 of 3 people found this review helpful