Gai-Jin by James Clavell

By James Clavell

The inheritor to the outstanding English buying and selling corporation, the Noble House…the direct descendant of the 1st Toranaga Shogun fighting to usher his kingdom into the modern age…a appealing younger French girl without end torn among ambition and desireTheir lives intertwine in an unique land newly open to foreigners, gai-jin, torn aside via greed, idealism, and terrorism. Their passions mingle with monarchs and diplomats, assassins, courtesans and spies. Their fates collide in James Clavell’s most recent masterpiece set in nineteenth-century Japan—an unforgettable epic seething with betrayal and secrets and techniques, brutality and heroism, love and forbidden passions.…

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The next year two Russians, an officer and a sailor from a Russian man-of-war, hacked to death, again in Yokohama. A few months later two Dutch merchants. Then the young interpreter at the British Legation in Kanagawa stabbed from behind and left to bleed to death. Heusken, the Secretary of the American Mission, butchered into a dozen pieces while riding home after a dinner party at the Prussian Legation. And last year a British soldier and sergeant cut down outside the Consul General's bedroom!

The shishi had conjured up an all-embracing slogan, Sonno-joi: Honor the Emperor and Expel the Barbarians, and had sworn, whatever the cost, to remove anyone in the way. "Even if they are shishi," Sanjiro said angrily, "I cannot allow such a public disobedience to go unpunished, however merited--I agree those gai-jin should have dismounted and knelt, as customary, and behaved like civilized persons, yes, it was they who provoked my men. " "Then give me your advice," he said irritably. "If they're shishi as you say and I crush them, or order them to commit seppuku, I will be assassinated before the month is out, however many my guards--don't attempt to deny it, I know.

The other younger samurai was sitting cross-legged on the ground, nursing his shoulder, using his bunched kimono to stop the flow of blood, his sword, still stained, in his lap. His compatriot went over to him and helped him up, cleansed the sword on the kimono of the nearest traveller, an old woman, who shivered in terror but kept her head pressed to the earth. Both men were young and strongly built. They smiled at each other, then, together, examined the wound. The bullet had gone right through the muscle of his upper arm.

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