Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.

  • Apple
  • Android
  • Windows Phone
  • Android

To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.

Buy New
$9.41
  • List Price: $16.00
  • Save: $6.59 (41%)
Free Shipping for Prime Members | Fast, FREE Shipping with Amazon Prime
In Stock.
Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.
Silence: A Novel (Picador... has been added to your Cart
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See all 2 images

Silence: A Novel (Picador Modern Classics) Paperback – January 10, 2017

4.5 out of 5 stars 232 customer reviews

See all 19 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Price
New from Used from
Paperback
"Please retry"
$9.41
$6.37 $9.72
Unknown Binding
"Please retry"
$500.00

Best Books of the Month
Best Books of 2016
Looking for something great to read? Browse our editors' picks for the best books of the year in fiction, nonfiction, mysteries, children's books, and much more.
$9.41 Free Shipping for Prime Members | Fast, FREE Shipping with Amazon Prime In Stock. Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.
click to open popover

Frequently Bought Together

  • Silence: A Novel (Picador Modern Classics)
  • +
  • Silence and Beauty: Hidden Faith Born of Suffering
  • +
  • A Life of Jesus
Total price: $41.11
Buy the selected items together

Editorial Reviews

Review

Language Notes

See all Editorial Reviews
NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE


Product Details

  • Series: Picador Modern Classics
  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Picador Modern Classics; Rep Mti edition (January 10, 2017)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1250082277
  • ISBN-13: 978-1250082275
  • Product Dimensions: 5.4 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (232 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #239 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
"Silence" is an excellent novel. Comparisons between Shusaku Endo and British novelist Graham Greene are apt, as both deal with the relationships that develop between individuals, Catholicism, and the world. "Silence" is an extremely intense historical novel. While knowledge of Catholicism may be helpful for some of the situations and terminology, the issues of doubt and faith, in God and in people, are readily available to any reader.
"Silence" is set in sixteenth century Japan, where Portuguese missionaries must contend with traders from rival European nations and the persecution of Christians by Japanese feudal lords. The feudal lords want to drive Christianity out of Japan, and try to do so by torturing priests into apostasy, denying their faith. This is done symbolically by stepping on a "fumie," a Christian image, like a picture of Mary or a crucifix. Two Portuguese priests, Sebastian Rodrigues and Francis Garrpe, make a dangerous journey to Japan, both to locate and comfort Japanese converts, and to discover the truth about a supposed apostate priest, Ferreira.
"Silence" makes use of several narrative approaches, third person omniscient at the beginning and ending, while the middle portion of the novel is written in the style of a diary and letters from Rodrigues' point of view. The main protagonist, Rodrigues must deal with the validity of his faith, the propriety of the Christian mission in Japan, the suffering of Japanese converts, and the silence of God in the midst of so much hardship.
Rodrigues' trials are exacerbated by his physical and cultural isolation, as he and Garrpe are forced to conceal themselves in a small hut dug out of the side of a mountain near Nagasaki.
Read more ›
2 Comments 438 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback
"Silence" towers above what passes for most religious fiction for its evocative and unflinching treatment of faith and suffering.
While the theology of pain has been touched on in much of Western literature, most of it recently seems either an apology for God's permitting suffering, rants against God for permitting suffering, or pep talks for believers going through suffering. Philip Yancey has provided a great service on the issue in his books on pain, but even they take a somewhat detached view. By contrast, Shusako Endo seems to write from within the terrible grasp of suffering in "Silence", one of the most moving novels I have ever read.
The plot centers around a band of Portugese priests who land in Japan in the 1600's to spread the gospel on a culturally and spiritually unfertile soil. Their theology is eventually challenged in ways that only persecution and suffering can do: can I carry on here? should I? can I forgive my tormentors? should I? Ultimately, they wrestle with public apostasy and with whether or not they could ever be forgiven if they commit such an act.
This is not a feel-good book by any stretch. It deals with failure, defeat, abandonment, pain, and the 'silence' of God through it all. But at the same time it opens the window wide on what the Man of Sorrows went through on our behalf and on how we need God's grace not because of our strength but because of our weakness. Highly recommended.
1 Comment 245 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This novel is very sad and very hard to take. It forces the reader to search one's own soul. It is a very compelling story. Your opinion on the book is going to depend on where you are in your own life. I do not think you can read this story and be unchanged, unmoved. It is worth reading to the end and then turn it around and read it again. It is very powerful.
Comment 77 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I am conflicted in my assessment and understanding of this book. The book is elegantly written. The prose and story are somber and direct. The setting is rich and I think it offers some insight into the relevant society and culture. I am not sure, however, what the author intended me to get out of the book or whether what I got out of the book is "right" or my projection. I am going to describe the events of the story, so if you are not interested in "spoilers" do not read on.

This book is set in Japan circa 1630, well into the period when Japan had outlawed and cruelly repressed Christianity. Christianity had been introduced into Japan around 1550 by Portuguese Jesuits, where it had met with success. By the late 16th century, it is estimated that 400,000 Japanese had converted; some conversions were shallow and superficial, but others were deep and authentic, deep enough for a number of Japanese Christians to welcome martyrdom, and for others to go underground as "Hidden Christians" (Kakure Kurishitan) where they would keep a strange and mutated form of Christianity alive for 300 years. The survival of even a mutated form of Christianity in Japan is a story worth telling in light of the horrible repression that was visited upon the Kakure Kurishitan community, repressions involving stepping on the "fumi" - an image of Christ - and horrible tortures designed to force Christians to renounce Christianity.

The story opens with a Jesuit priest Sebastio Rodriguez and two other Jesuits leaving Portugal to travel to Japan to investigate the truth behind the news that their mentor, Cristóvão Ferreira, Cristóvão Ferreira, had been tortured into apostatizing.
Read more ›
18 Comments 50 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse

Most Recent Customer Reviews

Set up an Amazon Giveaway

Silence: A Novel (Picador Modern Classics)
Amazon Giveaway allows you to run promotional giveaways in order to create buzz, reward your audience, and attract new followers and customers. Learn more about Amazon Giveaway
This item: Silence: A Novel (Picador Modern Classics)