- Audible Audio Edition
- Listening Length: 53 hours and 32 minutes
- Program Type: Audiobook
- Version: Unabridged
- Publisher: Blackstone Audio, Inc.
- Audible.com Release Date: January 23, 2015
- Language: English
- ASIN: B00SNM5552
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank:
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Shogun: The Epic Novel of Japan: The Asian Saga, Book 1 Audiobook – Unabridged
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So much has already been written here and so many other reviews already -- suffice to say, I love it, will always love it. Instead of detailing more about the story or writing, I'm going to share some of my favorite passages so you can get an idea of how brilliantly this is written. The first quote is one of my all-time most cherished.
“Leave the problems of God to God and karma to karma. Today you're here and nothing you do will change that. Today you are alive and here and honored and blessed with good fortune. Look at this suset, it's beautiful, neh? This sunset exists. Tomorrow does not exist. There is only now. Please look. It is so beautiful and it will never happen ever again, never, not this sunset, never in all infinity. Lose yourself in it, make yourself one with nature and do not worry about karma, yours, mine, or that of the village.”
“How beautiful life is and how sad! How fleeting, with no past and no future, only a limitless now.”
“Isn’t it only through laughter that we become one with the gods and thus can endure life and can overcome all the horror and waste and suffering here on earth? …Isn’t it only through laughter we can stay human?”
“Always remember, child... that to think bad thoughts is really the easiest thing in the world. If you leave your mind to itself it will spiral you down into ever increasing unhappiness. To think good thoughts, however, requires effort. This is one onf the things that discipline - training - is about.”
“It's a saying they have, that a man has a false heart in his mouth for the world to see, another in his breast to show to his special friends and his family, and the real one, the true one, the secret one, which is never known to anyone except to himself alone, hidden only God knows where.”
I highly recommend all of the other novels in James Clavell's Asian Saga, especially Whirlwind and Tai Pan. The entire Saga spans from 1600 to 1970's and is truly an experience to behold.
Since I had read it before, and Shogun is a long novel, I was a bit hesitant to start reading it; but once I got started, I could not put the novel down. This is story-telling at its best. It takes you to a different time, a different world. The characters are so well developed that they become three-dimensional. The story line is complex, but easy to follow. Although it is a long novel, when I finished reading it, I wished it could have kept going on and on.
If I was going to be stranded on a desert island with only one book, Shogun would be one book that I would seriously consider.
This is easily one of the most intricate, most richly detailed and complex stories I’ve ever read. When you're done you will have received a wonderful history lesson on feudal Japan and it's politics including its relationship to the Catholic Church, the Samurai's bushido code, Shinto and Buddhism, a primer on the Japanese language, consorts of the Willow World, how and when to use ninja, seafaring, early European politics including the ongoing Protestant reformation and more. All of this wrapped around a stranger in a strange land, a love story, and a looming war that threatens to involve all of Japan. I’ve already made up my mind that I will read it again in a few years and I have no doubt I will love it all over again.
Most recent customer reviews
It is captivating, exciting, intriguing... Just love it!