Cover Image: Tokyo Kill

Tokyo Kill

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Member Reviews

An excellent, fast read full of twists and turns. Loved the mystery, but also amateur detective Brodie. I can see why the first novel was optioned by Bad Robot. This definitely could be a franchise of movies. Equal parts detective, art dealer, and single father he tries to balance life as the mystery takes off. The historical and cultural aspects make the rich detail really stand out. Everything from the food, to the street life, to the dojo it kept moving. Even thought the location moved 3 times, the story was cohesive and the mystery kept developing. I had an idea, but the twists at the end were a complete surprise. Overall a great series and I’m going to go back and pick up the first book. A new favorite series for sure.

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I found myself picking this book up to whisk myself of to another world, a place where I could rush after the mystery and allow myself to be completely enveloped by the atmosphere of this book. Really enjoyable read.

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Well written.
Good read. Interesting storyline with good characters.
Different than what I expected.

Thank you to NetGalley for allowing me access to this book. This is my honest review. All opinions are my own.

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I really enjoyed the characters and the plot in this book. Some of the background information, which was needed, on Japanese history and China-Japan interactions, was tedious and heavy for me.

It was a good read with some unexpected twists.

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This is a fantastic series of books so far and I'm heavily invested in Brodie-san, this is the second book of the series so definitely check out the first book Japantown. I won't go down the spoiler route suffice to say you should definitely check out the series if you enjoy a good crime/thriller.

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I'm combining my reviews for Japantown and Tokyo Kill -- I don't have much to add to the many reviews except that these are pretty good books. Not totally realistic, but a good amount of action and suspense. Recommended for int'l thriller fans. Tokyo Kill is the better of the two.

I really appreciate the copy for review!!

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Surprisingly good book.It made me want to read the prequel Japantown.
Characters are 3D,humour is not scarce and you will learn a lot about Japan and the japanese.
The martial arts are treated rationally,the hero is not a super-hero,and the plot doesn't lack intrigue.

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5/5- I love this series! Hardcore thriller/ mystery —

This book was even more fast-paced than book one, Japantown. I loved the history of both the Japanese and Chinese recollections of war. Barry Lancet is a master storyteller that manages to tell convincing break neck speed thrillers without the use of blue language or sex. I’d say this book has the same pace and depth as a Dan Brown novel, and that is GOOD!

I also appreciate the authors note(s) sharing with the reader what parts of the “history” and locations are fact or fiction. And also, the heartfelt dedication to the forgotten WWII Japanese veterans. It seems every war has this group of soldiers and it’s a shame they do not have an outlet to share their stories. I wish I could meet Mr. Lancet just to say thank you.

For sure and forever would rec this series. Bring on book three!

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This story pulled me in right from the opening page. Barry Lancet is a great writer and fantastic storyteller. I will be looking for more of his books in the future!

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Good plot and story, and the timeline is clear and easy to follow, but a little too much intricate spy-stuff. Great characters and thrilling action.

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OMG what can I say about this that hasn't already been said but here goes once again I have to say I loved how from the ever start it just pulled me in the pages, and once that started I could stop reading , had to know what happened next, had to find out all the Secrets and Lies that was been told and kept, who was trying to kill Jim and his friends, loved how Mr. Lancet mixed in the background of Japanese culture along with Chinese and the history of both that I didn't even know, it made every thing more real some how. I also loved how once again the main character Jim Brodie reminded me of my all time Japanese and Chinese detective movies like Great Charlie Chan Detective Mystery ,Mr. Wong, Detective just to name a few, would love to say thinks to Barry Lancet, s well as to Simion & Schunster an Netgalley for letting me read once again a great story,if you love Mystery, Thriller & Suspense non stop action, then you have to pick it up , because its all of that and more , not once did it let me down at all it delivered everything I love in a really great Mystery, Thriller & Suspense novel. five stars all the way, exchange for my honest opinion

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Really terrific - adept and fast writing, with characters excellently set out - okay, well, it feels sometimes derivative: the PI with past history and a child, and an attractive smart policewoman he teams up with - something's going to happen - we feel it from the start. The exciting element is setting in Japan- and we are taken to the west too - two sets of crimes seem to overlap and a valuable object is at the heart of horrific murders- we are not spared the graphic violence - tough, great plot and hard-nosed detective with a soft side and capable of physically looking after himself - all adds up to a great read - that kept me up more than one night to finish (plus I did not skip to ending which I do when I am a bit bored with pace ... I did not want to miss anything. Really good! I'm going to find the earlier one.

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Book Review: Japantown (Book 1) and Tokyo Kill (Book 2), Jim Brodie series by Barry Lancet

As a student of Japanese culture who actually lived in Japan, I had high expectations that perhaps these books may be where one would find fresh perspectives from a "gaijin" writer - a thriller writer at that, juxtaposed against the subtle delivery and stellar quality of novels of the Murakami and Ishiguro variety.

I really wanted to like both books, but it just wasn't to be.

The first novel is interesting enough - about "shadow powerbrokers". Japantown is in reference to a San Francisco neighborhood, not in the streets of Japan, and indeed much of the story takes place in the U.S.A., with the finale staged in Long Island, NY.

References to Japan are studied, caricatured and contrived, not natural. The protagonist's elaboration of the adoption of Chinese kanji into the Japanese language is quite a bit off. There are indeed well-researched cultural references to Japanese art, handicraft, history, even dark culture - tsuba, tansu, washi, Lord Hideyoshi, Sengakuji, 47 ronin, Tokugawa "Dog Shogun", nedayashi.

The villains' safe harbor in the story, Soga-jujo, is not a place that would realistically exist. Giving Western names to some of the main killer-villains baffles, these being Japanese individuals.

The "James Bond" wannabe protagonist cannot be defeated in hand-to-hand combat, won't be killed by bullets, but yet has the temperament of an adolescent, frequently losing his cool. "What the hell are you doing?", says the martial arts zen master in protest to a Japanese speaker.

The second book is a bit more readable with an interesting plot about lost WWII treasures and a few good lessons in East Asian history. But again much of the action occurs outside of Japan with a generous share of stereotype pop culture concepts that the Japanese are going to be all about karate chops, Kendo sticks and brutal Yakuza types.

The final battle in this second book is also removed from Japan - in Miami and the Caribbean.

Review based on advance reading copies provided by NetGalley and Simon & Schuster.

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Great action with a unique air of authenticity. I going to find #1 and read it now. This is not the average "sleepy serial we get SO MUCH of today. Read this one this weekend.

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The idea of a murder mystery wrapped in the texture of Chinese & Japanese honor has definitely permeated through modern culture. “Rising Sun” as a Hollywood adaptation tried to integrate the idea of how honor mixes with tradition and greed. With “Tokyo Kills” [Barry Lancet/Simon & Schuster/352pgs], which continues the trails of one PI Jim Brodie, the book follows his return to Tokyo after the events of “Japantown” (the previous book which this reviewer has not read). Like Clive Cussler’s Dirk Pitt, antiquities and investigation mix. With “Tokyo Kill”, the progression is more linear but no less intriguing. Brodie, as a single father of daughter, is trying to keep his head low but apparently after his last adventure, anonymity is a foregone pastime. He gets drawn into a case where World War II veterans from the Japanese side are being killed off. The MacGuffin of this progression is a murder which looks like it could have been committed by any number of organizations. The efficiency in how the story works is in the confusion of pulling away what a violent act actually means and how it is accomplished in the dense macabre of both the Chinese and Japanese underworld as well as spycraft. The reveal has a texture of traditionalism but in the way it is explained gives credence to the eventual third act. While the resolution and explanation of the actual con which involves certain treasures of World War II has weight, the final protagonist is in a certain way a letdown simply because of the character’s almost unironic basis as a cog in the wheel. Nevertheless the “gajin” in a strange land motif that works while still adhering to the cliche of falling for the strong local woman who honor is battered because of chivalry versus the double standard of ambition and accomplishment (especially in such a patriarchal society). The story is adequately handled and, as the author has lived and currently lives in Japan, allows him to see the aspect of the interaction in modern life. “Tokyo Kill” is an effective pursuit down to its end despite some logic and plot leaps.


By Tim Wassberg

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