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'Clavell never puts a foot wrong . . . Get it, read it, you'll enjoy it mightily' Daily Mirror

This is James Clavell's tour-de-force; an epic saga of one Pilot-Major John Blackthorne, and his integration into the struggles and strife of feudal Japan... View details

Blackthorne was suddenly awake. For a moment he thought he was dreaming because he was ashore and the room unbelievable. It was small and very clean and covered with soft mats. He was lying on a thick...
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Japan is one of the world's wealthiest and most technologically advanced nations, and its rapid ascent to global power status after 1853 remains one of the most remarkable stories in modern world history. Yet it has not been an easy path; military ca... View details

The beginning of Japan’s modernization is usually dated to 1868. In that year, the last of the shoguns would formally “return power” to the Throne, ending Japan’s two-and-a-half century experiment in ...
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Distinguished scholar of Japanese religions and culture Helen Hardacre offers the first comprehensive history of Shinto, the ancient and vibrant tradition whose colorful rituals are still practiced today. Under the ideal of Shinto, a divinely descend... View details

2. See Inoue Nobutaka, “Introduction: What Is Shinto?,” in Shinto: A Short History, by Inoue Nobutaka (ed.), Itō Satoshi, Endō Jun, Mori Mizue, trans. by Mark Teeuwen and John Breen (London: Routledg...
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A]n excellent book... """" """"-"The Economist"

"Financial Times" Asia editor David Pilling presents a fresh vision of Japan, drawing on his own deep experience, as well as observations from a cross section of Japanese citizenry, including novelist ... View details

It was in 1666 that the local potentate, a former engineer by the name of Heitazaemon Yamazaki, ordered the wealthy merchants of what became Rikuzentakata to plant pine trees. The sturdy black pines w...
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A Kirkus Reviews Best Nonfiction Book of the Year

A groundbreaking history that considers the attack on Pearl Harbor from the Japanese perspective and is certain to revolutionize how we think of the war in the Pacific.

When Japan attacked the United ... View details

Prince Konoe Fumimaro, a lanky, mustached aesthete who once translated Oscar Wilde’s “The Soul of Man Under Socialism” and was now the prime minister of Japan, was in a melancholy mood. He was rarely ...
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This prize-winning book is both an illustrated tour of a Tokyo rarely seen in Japan travel guides and an artist's warm, funny, visually rich, and always entertaining graphic memoir.

Florent Chavouet, a young graphic artist, spent six months explorin... View details

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The classic portrayal of court life in tenth-century Japan

Written by the court gentlewoman Sei Shonagon, ostensibly for her own amusement, The Pillow Book offers a fascinating exploration of life among the nobility at the height of the Heian perio... View details

Sei Shōnagon lived at the height of the Heian period. ‘Heian’ roughly translates as ‘peace and tranquility’, and nicely expresses the nature of this long, sunny period in Japanese history, stretching ...
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In The Japanese Mind, Roger Davies offers Westerners an invaluable key to the unique aspects of Japanese culture.

Readers of this book will gain a clear understanding of what makes the Japanese, and their society, tick. Among the topics explored: ai... View details

Ambiguity, oraimai, is defined as a state in which there is more than one intended meaning, resulting in obscurity, indistinctness, and uncertainty. To be ambiguous in Japanese is generally translated...
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What a rare mushroom can teach us about sustaining life on a fragile planet

Matsutake is the most valuable mushroom in the world-and a weed that grows in human-disturbed forests across the northern hemisphere. Through its ability to nurture trees, m... View details

Geologists have begun to call our time the Anthropocene, the epoch in which human disturbance outranks other geological forces. As I write, the term is still new—and still full of promising contradict...
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The Knight Templar follows Arn's adventures in the Holy Land, where he discovers that the infidel Saracens aren't as brutish and uncivilised as he had been led to believe, and that in fact there is another, darker side to the teaching of the Cisterci... View details

During Muharram, the holy month of mourning, which occurred when the summer was at its hottest in the year 575 after Hijra, called Anno Domini 1177 by the infidels, God sent His most remarkable delive...
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