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Killing Rain Mass Market Paperback – June 6, 2006

Book 4 of 7 in the John Rain Series

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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Onyx (June 6, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0451412184
  • ISBN-13: 978-0451412188
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 1 x 6.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (216 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #354,122 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

At the start of Eisler's taut and compelling fourth thriller to feature John Rain (after 2004's Rain Storm), the freelance assassin's latest employer, Israeli intelligence, has sent him and his longtime associate, Dox, to Manila to kill weapons dealer Manheim Levi. Just as Rain is about to make his move, however, Levi's young son suddenly appears on the scene; Levi's bodyguards wind up shot while Levi and his son escape. The dead bodyguards turn out to be ex-CIA; and Jim Hilger, the renegade Company man with whom they were also working, is upset enough to ask his own specialists to exact revenge. Trying to find a way to complete his mission, Rain contacts Delilah, a fellow intelligence agent with whom he's been involved. But her Mossad colleagues, who have lost their trust in Rain's reliability, are setting up their own plan to take care of him. The plot has enough twists and turns to satisfy, and Eisler is an adept hand at pacing and suspense. The dialogue generally rings true, though the switching back and forth between first- and third-person narrative can be distracting. Various exotic Asian locales add to the appeal.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Booklist

Freelance assassin John Rain returns for a fourth outing. He has a new boss, the Israeli intelligence organization Mossad; a new partner, the affable sniper Dox; and a new outlook: maybe killing only bad people will help him feel better about himself. The plan falls apart, however, when Rain botches his assignment and winds up on the run, from both his current employer and his former colleagues at the CIA. The Rain series has been compared to Ian Fleming's James Bond novels, but there's one important difference: Fleming never took Bond seriously, and Eisler takes Rain very seriously indeed. That's not necessarily bad, of course, but it may be easier to sustain the superkiller premise if you can laugh at it a little. Killing Rain is the weakest in the series, but it's by no means a failure. There's plenty of nicely detailed action here, and if the idea of a hard-edged professional killer with a conscience seems to be losing some of its oomph, Eisler is a skilled enough writer to resuscitate his hero next time out. David Pitt
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Customer Reviews

Great read and very well written.
Richard R. Smith
I've really enjoyed reading the "Rain" series and look forward to reading the next book.
Very good character development too.

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

27 of 28 people found the following review helpful By therosen VINE VOICE on June 28, 2005
Format: Hardcover
Eisler's talents continue to shine in this newest novel about John Rain: He writes what he knows about, and he does it well.

In this latest novel, John Rain runs around Hong Kong, Manila, and Thailand searching for his latest victim - an Israeli explosives expert under the protection of the CIA. Who better to create an "accidental" death than John Rain. It's a busy ride, where the hunter and hunted are ambiguous, elusive loyalties are tested and you never know what turn is coming next. The climax is strong, but leaves you breathlessly waiting for the next one. (More Caffiene for Mr. Eisler - one a year is a fast pace, but we'd like them even quicker!)

Similar to previous books in the series, you'll finish this one within a day or two of buying it. (I picked it up at a signing on Friday and finished it by the following Monday) It's just too hard to put down.

One suggestion for the reader is to start with book one (Rain Fall) if you're really interested in the series. You can read this one standalone, but the history of Rain as well as the context of his personal changes play out over multiple novels. This is not as purely episodic as the James Bond series.

I really hope someone acts on the option to put this series on the big screen. Beat Takeshi - are you listening???
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18 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Jerry Saperstein HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on July 21, 2005
Format: Hardcover
Barry Eisler in creating John Rain has invented an assasin, a hit-man for hire, who thinks, who broods. Rain, the offspring of a Japanese father and American mother is a contemporary samurai who continually muses over his chosen career as a very high-priced, meticulous assassin. Rain has what many might consider "problems," such as lack of a permanent love interest and so on. In "Killing Rain," the fourth in the John Rain series, aging becomes another of his concerns.

Through a intermediary, a gorgeous Israeli intelligence agent who specializes in seduction to serve her country, Rain is hired to kill an Israeli who sells knowledge of explosives to terrorists. Rain has acquired a sort-of partner, known as Dox (as in "unorthodox"), a large, verbose American. Dox's specialty is as a sniper.

The two track down the target, Manny, to Manilla and in Rain's typically painstaking (and thrilling way) set the scene for his demise. The ambush goes wrong and among the dead are two men who might be CIA agents. Rain's concern for Manny's young son is what makes the assination go wrong. Rain has scruples: he isn't just anyone's murderer.

The beauty of reading Eisler is that he takes you into the very complex mind of John Rain and some of the people he interacts with. Their is Deliah, the beautiful Israel agent. Dox who appears to be superficial, but is not. Even with minor characters, Eisler manages to evoke depth in them.

The action moves from the Phillipines to China and is unrelenting. Now Rain and Dox are being hunted by the Israelis and a mysterious organization that may or may not be connected to the CIA.

It never stops. Eisler keeps pouring it on and Rain keeps thinking and thinking.
Read more ›
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By David Montgomery VINE VOICE on June 23, 2005
Format: Hardcover
For those searching for a little more action in their reading diet, you could do no better than Barry Eisler's Killing Rain (Putnam, $24.95), the fourth in a series featuring Japanese-American assassin John Rain, a contract killer who specializes in the "natural causes" hit.

Rain is hired by the Mossad to eliminate an Israeli arms dealer operating in Manila. At the crucial moment, though, the target's young son appears on the scene, causing Rain to freeze. The arms merchant escapes and Rain's hesitation haunts him, his conscience plaguing him for the first time with self-doubt.

After three action-packed adventures, culminating in last year's stand-out Rain Storm, Eisler has taken his latest book in a slightly different direction, focusing less on the adrenaline, and more on the psyche of John Rain. The result is a more introspective and deeply nuanced story, and a richer look into the heart and mind of this compelling killer.

Even given that change of focus, Killing Rain still features plenty of thrills and tense moments, as well as the beautifully rendered exotic settings that have become the series' trademark. All in all, Killing Rain is a satisfying step forward for one of the genre's most gifted writers.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Brkat on August 30, 2005
Format: Hardcover
Shadow assassin-for-hire John Rain is again doing what he does best. This time, at the behest of the Mossad, he is off through Southeast Asia stalking black market arms dealer Manheim Levi. By now longtime Rain devotees are as familiar with his modus operandi and his obsession for detail as they are with author Barry Eisler's taut, crisp and compelling penmanship. None of this subtracts one iota from this being another terrific John Rain novel. Sensual femme fatale Delilah returns as does Rain's alter-ego associate Dox. The trio makes for an unorthodox but effective (and entertaining) team as they pursue the completion of their assignment. A slightly different slant in this fourth novel.

I will echo previous reviewers' lament that, after reading "Killing Rain" so quickly, it seems a long wait until Eisler writes the fifth Rain novel next year. But enjoy this one for now, it's another great read.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews

More About the Author

A Note On The New Titles

Why have I changed the titles of the Rain books? Simply because I've never thought the titles were right for the stories. The right title matters--if only because the wrong one has the same effect as an inappropriate frame around an otherwise beautiful painting. Not only does the painting not look good in the wrong frame; it will sell for less, as well. And if you're the artist behind the painting, having to see it in the wrong frame, and having to live with the suboptimal commercial results, is aggravating.

The sad story of the original Rain titles began with the moniker Rain Fall for the first in the series. It was a silly play on the protagonist's name, and led to an unfortunate and unimaginative sequence of similar such meaningless, interchangeable titles: Hard Rain, Rain Storm, Killing Rain (the British titles were better, but still not right: Blood from Blood for #2; Choke Point for #3; One Last Kill for #4). By the fifth book, I was desperate for something different, and persuaded my publisher to go with The Last Assassin, instead. In general, I think The Last Assassin is a good title, but in fairness it really has nothing to do with the story in the fifth book beyond the fact that there's an assassin in it. But it was better than more of Rain This and Rain That. The good news is, the fifth book did very well indeed; the bad news is, the book's success persuaded my publisher that assassin was a magic word and that what we needed now was to use the word assassin in every title. And so my publisher told me that although they didn't care for my proposed title for the sixth book--The Killer Ascendant--they were pleased to have come up with something far better. The sixth book, they told me proudly, would be known as The Quiet Assassin.

I tried to explain that while not quite as redundant as, say, The Deadly Assassin or The Lethal Assassin, a title suggesting an assassin might be notable for his quietness was at best uninteresting (as opposed to, say, Margret Atwood's The Blind Assassin, which immediately engages the mind because of the connection of two seemingly contradictory qualities). The publisher was adamant. I told them that if they really were hell-bent on using assassin in a title that otherwise had nothing to do with the book, couldn't we at least call the book The Da Vinci Assassin, or The Sudoku Assassin? In the end, we compromised on Requiem for an Assassin, a title I think would be good for some other book but is unrelated to the one I wrote--beyond, again, the bare fact of the presence of an assassin in the story.

Now that I have my rights back and no longer have to make ridiculous compromises about these matters, I've given the books the titles I always wanted them to have--titles that actually have something to do with the stories, that capture some essential aspect of the stories, and that act as both vessel and amplifier for what's most meaningful in the stories. For me, it's like seeing these books for the first time in the frames they always deserved. It's exciting, satisfying, and even liberating. Have a look yourself and I hope you'll enjoy them.


Barry Eisler spent three years in a covert position with the CIA, then worked as a technology lawyer and startup executive in Silicon Valley and Japan, earning his black belt at the Kodokan International Judo Center along the way. Eisler's bestselling thrillers have won the Barry Award and the Gumshoe Award for Best Thriller of the Year, have been included in numerous "Best Of" lists, and have been translated into nearly twenty languages. To learn more, please visit Or Facebook, MySpace, or Twitter.

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