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Tokyo Kill: A Jim Brodie Thriller (2) Paperback – December 8, 2015
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—Steve Berry, New York Times bestselling author of The Lincoln Myth
“[A] sophisticated international thriller . . . Having lived and worked in Japan for more than 25 years, Lancet brings an impressive breadth of knowledge to the historical aspects of the mystery and a sharp sense of immediacy to its action.”
—The New York Times Book Review
"Lancet imbues 'Tokyo Kill' with a vivid sense of Japan, from sections of Tokyo that only a native would know about to meticulous research into the country's history and legends... Lancet hit the ground running last year with his superb debut, 'Japantown,' and continues that winning streak with 'Tokyo Kill.'"
— New York Times/AP
"Boasting surefire characters including the taciturn, thick-chested chief detective Noda and notorious crime figure called TNT who owes Brodie favors...[Lancet's] series remains highly distinctive."
— Kirkus Reviews
"An impressive novel of spirited adventure and edgy intrigue. It's obvious Lancet has firsthand knowledge of Japan and has done extensive research regarding the historical elements. This, along with realistic characterization and notable plot development, makes Tokyo Kill a dynamic read.”
— Fresh Fiction
“Barry Lancet, an American expat who has lived in Japan for more than two decades, [weaves] in history, art, cuisine and martial arts seamlessly. Readers who enjoy fast-paced tales of intrigue are in for a treat.”
“The author's familiarity with Japanese history and culture, combined with his storytelling skills, make this a first-rate mystery . . . a clear indicator that Lancet considers Jim Brodie a series-worthy character. He'd be right, too.”
"An excellent mystery that ... offers some nuanced understandings of the China-Japan relationship."
"Brodie is immediately noteworthy as one of the more interesting characters in the thriller universe...a book worth reading and a series worth starting."
— Book Reporter
“Lancet successfully places a PI in an international thriller plot in his highly entertaining debut . . . Readers will want to see more of the talented Jim Brodie, with his expertise in Japanese culture, history, and martial arts.”
— Publishers Weekly (starred review)
About the Author
- Item Weight : 12 ounces
- Paperback : 352 pages
- ISBN-10 : 1451691734
- Dimensions : 5.5 x 1 x 8.38 inches
- ISBN-13 : 978-1451691733
- Publisher : Simon & Schuster; Reprint edition (December 8, 2015)
- Language: : English
- Best Sellers Rank: #1,640,008 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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So, why did I read this book to the end?
The reason why I drove myself to finish Tokyo Kill is simple: in other respects, it’s an excellent piece of work. Lancet writes reasonably well. He is a long-term resident of Japan and clearly has studied a great deal about its history and culture. His novel sparkles with engrossing detail about the country’s storied past and with insight about its culture today (although at times the digressions to explain the finer points do become tedious). And he clearly knows how to craft a thriller, creating a deep sense of mystery, suspense, and surprise. None of this bothered me. It was all the guts and gore splashed across the page that had me retching.
Introducing Jim Brodie
The protagonist in Tokyo Kill is Jim Brodie, the central character in what is now a series of three novels. Brodie is a fascinating character. In San Francisco, he owns and runs a small, struggling antique shop specializing in Japanese art and artifacts. He has also inherited a 50% share in Brodie Investigations, a firm his late father founded in Tokyo. Brodie divides his time between the two cities. As he was raised in Tokyo, he is bilingual, and he is proficient in Japanese martial arts. In fact, he is uncommonly tough.
That comes in handy when people try to kill him, which happens with unnatural frequency in the course of the novel. In fact, those attempts, which nearly succeed, subject Brodie to such a degree of physical damage, pain, and suffering that I find it difficult to understand how he could have survived the experience, much less risen from his hospital bed only hours later to seek out more punishment.
Tokyo, front and center
Brodie is in Tokyo tending to affairs at the detective agency that bears his name. A middle-aged “salaryman” bursts into the office demanding to speak with him, the man’s aging father in tow. The father, it develops, is 96 years old. He was a Japanese officer in Manchuria following Japan’s notoriously brutal invasion in 1937. Now, his old comrades are being murdered, one after another, and he fears for his life. Though his son disbelieves the threat, he hires Brodie Investigations to protect the old man. Naturally, additional murders follow. And therein lies the tale.
About the author
Barry Lancet has lived and worked in Tokyo for a long time. He was employed by one of Japan’s leading publishing houses for 25 years, “developing books” that were mostly about Japanese culture.
During WWII, Japanese soldiers occupying China hid the Last Emperor’s treasure, then it disappeared. Now, it appears some of the missing items have surfaced, and people are being murdered for the information. When an ex-Japanese soldier seeks help from Brodie Security, Jim Brodie reluctantly takes the case, not sure what his people can do. Some of the old soldiers are being murdered, along with their families, and he thinks he’s next. Putting guards on the old soldier, he’s shocked and amazed when the old man’s son is murdered. The signs point to Chinese Triads, but the Chinese say it’s not them. When Brodie breaks into a local Kendo club the son belonged to, he is attacked by men wearing masks, and beaten badly, throwing some suspicion on the martial arts club. Then he hears about a mysterious Japanese secret society called Black Wind that operated in China during the war.
This sequel to “Japantown” is another fast paced thriller with good action and mystery, and a nice twist at the end. I like the idea of these secret societies trained in killing techniques, and Japan seems to be filled with such groups. We get a lesson in Japanese and Asian culture, without it distracting from the pace of the story, and the author continues to introduce fascinating characters that I want to see more of, like the high ranking Chinese spy, and, of course, the new love interest for Jim Brodie. The story is not stuck in Japan, but moves to Miami and a South American country for the final confrontation with a sword-wielding master. Great action, good plot, and interesting characters. What more could the reader ask for? Highly recommended.
His background information sprinkled throughout the suspenseful storyline gives the reader a rich and insightful knowledge of Japan, it's culture, and food. I found this and the other two Jim Brodie mysteries great reading. I can't wait to see who plays Jim Brodie when they make this series into a movie. Suggestion for Barry Lancet - have Jim Brodie go to Kyoto for an extended assignment. It is sure to please.
Top reviews from other countries
It has a too much political view for me, talking about the 2nd Word War II involvement of Japanese army in China.
The ending is a kind of surprise when I see who the real culprit is.