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The Ninja (The Nicholas Linnear Series Book 1) [Kindle Edition]

Eric Van Lustbader
3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (148 customer reviews)

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Book Description

The New York Times–bestselling novel in which a martial artist’s past returns to haunt him—in the shape of a ninja

Raised in Japan by a British father and a Chinese mother, young Nicholas Linnear felt at home only in the dojo, where he gave himself over to mastering ninjutsuthe ancient art of the ninja. Over years of training, he ascended to the highest ranks imaginable until a confrontation over the very meaning of ninjutsuchanged his approach to martial arts forever, sending him on a journey that would take him across the globe.

After years of success in the advertising business, Linnear quits his job abruptly when he feels himself yearning for the life he led in Japan. Searching for direction, he meets a striking beauty named Justine and is beginning to fall in love when something chilling draws him back into his past: the corpse of a coworker, murdered by a Japanese throwing star. There is a ninja loose in New York City, and as the body count rises, it becomes clear that people close to Linnear are being targeted. Only he has the skill to stop a twisted killer with a personal vendetta.

Editorial Reviews

From the Inside Flap

"Totally gripping a tale of hatred and revenge as you will read...It is superb."
This is the story of Nicholas Linnear, half-Caucasian, half-Oriental, a man caught between East and West, between the sexual passions of a woman he can't forget and the one he can't control and between a past he can't escape and a destiny he can't avoid.
A sprawling erotic thriller that swings from postwar Japan to present-day New York in a relentless saga of violence and terror elaborately designed for the most savage vengeance of all...

About the Author

Eric Lustbader is the bestselling author of 'Second Skin, 'The Kaisho, 'The Miko and 'White Ninja', all starring Nicholas Linnear. He graduated from Columbia University in 1969. He spent fifteen years in the music industry, including working for both Elektra and CBS Records, and writing for 'Cash Box' magazine. He has also been a teacher. He lives with his wife in Southampton, New York.

Product Details

  • File Size: 1086 KB
  • Print Length: 509 pages
  • Publisher: Open Road Media Mystery & Thriller (March 25, 2014)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00ISH77K8
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #39,988 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars
3.8 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
51 of 54 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars WOW! January 8, 2000
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This excellent read is the first in a series of six about Nicholas Linnear, a half-Oriental and half-Western man well versed in many martial arts. Through present-day plots and flashbacks to post-war Japan through the eyes of Nicholas's father Colonel Dennis Linnear, watch as the story unfolds. Nicholas is torn up over a Japanese woman he knew as a younger man and his present-day girlfriend Justine who is being hunted down by a ninja assassin. But who is behind the ninja's actions? How does Justine's father's company Tomkin Industries fit in, and what is the secret behind several ritual killings in New York? This book also introduces Nicholas Linnear's friend Detective Lew Croaker, who, in a related subplot, is investigating the murders. And to top it all, some explicit sex and stunning martial arts action scenes! The part where Nicholas hunts the ninja down through New York, is one of the best action and suspense scenes in literature ever. If you are new to Eric Lustbader, read this one first and then read the rest of the Linnear chronology in order, and I guarantee you'll become addicted to him! Awesome.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a must December 31, 2001
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Ok, Ninja stories are passe now, and so 80's. I'm sure Ninja is to the 80's what the vampire is to the 90's. But you should really read this book. The story is rich, the dialogue is fantastic and the action is beyond compare. The Ninja is entertaining all the way through, and it's well worth the price of admission.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Popular martial arts blockbuster July 6, 2000
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Eric Van Lustbader's "The Ninja" has all the trappings of a cinematic thriller: a fast-moving plot, a villain skilled in the deadliest martial arts, suspenseful encounters, a narrative fuelled by passion and revenge, lashings of sex and spellbinding action scenes. Although it is regarded as a popular book, which is to say, "a good read" on account of its standard storyline and characterisation, its sophisticated language, with choice descriptions and refined diction, elevate to the altogether higher plane of literature.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Lustbader introduces his readership to Nicholas Linnear, a half caucasion, half Asian man whose maternal lineage is still quite a mystery. The supposition is that she (Linnear's mother) was Japanese, but Nicholas, nor the readers ever find out for certain. But lest I digress...

Lustbader does an overall wonderful job of describing life for a non-Japanese in Japan, especially during the post WWII era. Since many Japanese believe their race to be descended from that of the gods, it is understandable that they would look down upon anyone not of their stock; nevermind the fact that they were beaten, bombed and forced to re-write their constitution. Animosity could run amuck for many reasons....

Linnear is an incredibly intelligent individual--an intelligence coupled with a maturity level that causes the reader to find his character somewhat unbelievable--whose primary desire is to study bujutsu (the traditional feudal Japanese military arts). He is allowed to study at a dojo along side his "cousin," Saigo. Unfortunately for Linnear, Saigo does not like him and is destined to leave the dojo setting for much darker things.

I give Lustbader high points for the amount of research he puts into the settings and general "feel" he gives the reader. However, he is somewhat obsessed (seemingly so) with sex. Perhaps it is the lack of taboo that the Japanese place on sex that causes Lustbader to focus so much on it; nontheless, the scene in which a grown man sodomizes a young boy is a bit much for me!

Sans the sexual exploitations of the book, it is an overall good read. I think the potential Lustbader follower will enjoy his/her introduction to Linnear and the web that is his life.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great read March 15, 2001
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This book is a really great reading for anyone interested in martial arts or Orient in general. The novel is action-packed, fast-paced and complex. This is the first time I read a book where ninjutsu was presented in real enough and complex terms. Although the scenes of sex and violence were vividly described, I believe they only added to the power of the novel.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Martial Arts, Intrigue, and Romance... A must read August 17, 2000
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Just read the first 10 pages and you'll be hooked! This first book (and by far the best) of the Nicolas Linear series takes you back and forth between Japan and the US, between past memories and the current reality. If you love martial arts, I guarantee that you will identify with Nicolas. The sequel (The Miko) is also as riveting! A true page turner for those of us who love Japanese martial arts.

The reviewer, JR Geoffrion, has been practicing karate (Shorin-ryu, Shito-ryu, and Chito-ryu) since 1984. JR Geoffrion also practiced Kendo and Judo. JR earned his MBA from York University and completed the Wharton School Multi-National Marketing and Management Program. He also holds an Engineering degree from the University of Toronto.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Ninja: A Novel by Eric Van Lusbader April 1, 2013
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
The Ninja by Eric Van Lustbader is one of my favorite novels. I first read it back back in 1983 when I was a senior in High School. I am not really a very fast reader, as I usually like pronounce the words out in my head while I am reading, but I was able to read this book in record time. It is so suspensful that you will not want to stop reading it. This is Eric Van Lustbader's first novel with main character Nicholas Linnear. If you read it you will most certainly want to read his other novels about Nicholas Linnear.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Great read, fast lots of action and plot twists
Read this year's ago. Great read, fast lots of action and plot twists.
Published 3 days ago by Amazon Customer
2.0 out of 5 stars Sex, Japanese, Sex, and some Sex mixed in.
Perhaps if the author tried to tell a story instead of packing as much sex and phony sounding "exotic Asia" stuff as possible into each page, it might be a worthwhile book... Read more
Published 5 days ago by hoppy
4.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable reading
Enjoyed it very much. Loved the attention to detail and history.
Published 8 days ago by Ernest Muniz
5.0 out of 5 stars I love Eric Van Lustbader's novels but the book was in ...
I love Eric Van Lustbader's novels but the book was in such poor condition for the price, I was afraid almost to touch it.
Published 27 days ago by Irene M. Parks
4.0 out of 5 stars Still enjoyable
I first read this book back in the 1980s and found it and the subsequent Nicholas Linnear novels really fun. Read more
Published 28 days ago by Melvin K. Patterson
4.0 out of 5 stars Riveting
All that I expected from Lustbader, great story fast action and a journey into the mind of the ninja and Japanese traditions
Published 1 month ago by kathryn
1.0 out of 5 stars To be honest, I could not finish this book ...
To be honest, I could not finish this book. After the birth to daeth history of each character I felt there was a lot of detail just to add pages to the book.
Published 1 month ago by Gary Post
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best martial arts type of book in the genre
Well written and suspenseful to the end. One of the best martial arts type of book in the genre.
Published 1 month ago by Rod Shaw
1.0 out of 5 stars Absolute disgrace of a novel
It's simply amazing how much authors in the 70s and 80s could get away with. These days, the most lenient editor would have taken out a good 40% of the original manuscript. Read more
Published 2 months ago by J. A. Comesana
2.0 out of 5 stars Not enjoyable
I gave it up halfway through. It was too difficult to follow and I simply lost track of the storyline.
Published 2 months ago by ur74grad
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More About the Author

Eric Van Lustbader is the author of more than twenty-five best-selling novels, including The Ninja, a New York Times bestseller for 24 weeks, in which he introduced Nicholas Linnear, one of modern fictions most beloved and enduring heroes. His New York Times bestselling novel, "The Testament," was published in September, 2006 and in paperback in August, 2007.
His novels have been translated into over twenty languages; his books are best-sellers worldwide and are so popular whole sections of bookstores from Bangkok to Dublin are devoted to them. The Ninja was sold to 20th Century-Fox. It is now in pre-production.
Mr. Lustbader is a graduate of Columbia College, with a degree in Sociology. Before turning to writing full time, he enjoyed highly successful careers in the New York City public school system, where he holds licenses in both elementary and early childhood education, and in the music business. He is a second-level Reiki master.


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