A bold English adventurer; an invincible Japanese warlord; a beautiful woman torn between two ways of life, two ways of love - all brought together in an extraordinary saga of a time and a place aflame with conflict, passion, ambition, lust, and the struggle for power.
James Clavell'sShōgun is a modern classic, a masterpiece of historical fiction that will continue to endure for decades to come.
©1975 James Clavell (P)2015 Blackstone Audio, Inc.
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By dzadams on 03-02-16


This is the fourth time I have read, watched and listened to this fascinating book. I was very surprised how the audio book was just as good as reading it.

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10 of 10 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By Janine on 20-07-16


This book is rightfully considered a classic, the depth and scope of of it breathtaking.

Brief synopsis: Set in the late 1500's during Queen Elizabeth I 's reign, a ship makes it to Japan, the first Protestants to do so. The English know about Japan, but it is a closely guarded secret of Catholic Spanish and Portuguese trade.

The pilot of the ship, John Blackthorne, is a rarity in that he is well educated and articulate and manages to adapt to the Japanese rigid caste structure and culture. He survives and thrives where the majority of Europeans are unable to. He becomes a pawn in the deep plans of a Lord Toranaga while planning to take the Religious wars of Europe to the Jesuit silk trade monopoly.

Japanese society is described in loving detail, bringing it to life in a way that Europeans can access. It is an alien society to the West.

The narration is great, the story superb. IMO, the best of the Asian Saga.

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16 of 17 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
4 out of 5 stars
By Monty on 06-08-16

Worthwhile Re-visit to an Adolescent read

A steady albeit full plot with much historical geo-political, nautical and military interest The characters are well fleshed albeit one dimensional. The strength of the novel lies in the cultural clash between Japanese and Elizabethan / European culture and the ensuing conflict both between the Euro/Japanese and Anglican/Catholic interests. Another success is the pacing of the plot and interest which made the completion of a 1000+ page novel entirely manageable.
With reference to the performance, the sound production was disappointing with frequent fading out at the completion of sentences which was a distraction which occurred too frequently to be dismissed as a quirk instead of
editing and sound mixing failure.

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2 of 2 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By Gene on 07-10-17

Excellent novel, outstandingly read

Epic truly is the right word to describe this journey. Most impressive is Ralph Lister’s ability to take on characters and keep consistent with their idiosyncrasies - that’s talent!

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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