47 Ronin (英語) ペーパーバック – 2013/12/20
Kindle 端末は必要ありません。無料 Kindle アプリのいずれかをダウンロードすると、スマートフォン、タブレットPCで Kindle 本をお読みいただけます。
"47 Ronin Story" is the classic Japanese story of Lord Asano of Ako and one of the bloodiest vendettas in Japan's feudal history. In a shocking clash between the warriors and the merchant class of seventeenth century Japan, there emerged the most unlikely set of heroes--the forty-seven ronin, or ex-samurai, of Ako.
"The book contains a new foreword by Stephen Turnbull, the historical advisor for 47 Ronin and the author of more than 50 books on military history. …As Turnbull says in his foreword: 'The raid of the Forty Seven Ronin holds a unique place in Japanese history. There is nothing quite like it, and John Allyn's masterful re-retelling of the tale captures for modern readers much of the excitement with which the Japanese populace of the mid-eighteenth century would have responded to what for them was the equivalent of a newspaper sensation.'" —Publishers Weekly
"Fans of samurai will enjoy this retelling of a classic story of revenge and loyalty." —Japan Powered blog
Amazon.com で最も参考になったカスタマーレビュー (beta)
The climatic event took place over 300 years ago and much of the details have been lost to history, but Allyn clearly has a solid grasp of traditional Japanese culture and history and fills in the holes believably and elegantly. Allyn's style is descriptive yet clear and very enjoyable. You get a immersive feeling of the period, but it never gets bogged down.
I was delighted to discover this book had finally come to Kindle. I have read several English-language books on the 47 Ronin over the past 20 years, but I consider this one to be the definitive telling of the tale. The story of the 47 Ronin is one of the most beloved in Japanese history, and for anyone with even a passing interest in it, this is a must-read.
Essentially, a Samurai warlord was betrayed at court and killed. That left his samurai retainers in a difficult position as they became ronin - samurai with no master. This was a difficult, shameful, thing in those days but they chose to embrace it as they sought to follow the higher dictates of honour and seek revenge. The ending is not a Western ending but is powerful and appropriate.
This is a good reconstruction of the times, well written and appears to be faithful to known history. It is of course fictionalised history but it is fiction done well. This is a good yarn, which will entertain you as you comfort yourself that you're actually studying history. Lots of good action scenes, lots of fun and a satisfying ending.
If you think about this book as a historical narrative, then it is horrible and not worth the time. However, its description never made it seem like a historical narrative at any time. Instead, it was designed and marketed as a book of historical fiction that was meant to entertain, a task that it accomplishes fairly well. John Arryn has obviously done his research and is able to describe Japanese culture of the time period very well. He also does it in a way that someone unfamiliar with the culture can understand.
Unfortunately, the story moves somewhat slowly, but that is not a fault with the author himself. Most of the story itself is about the ronin waiting for the right time to attack the person they wish to kill. While the action may not be the focus, I found it enjoyable to watch the inner dynamics of the group, which is what the story focused on. One other downside that I found annoying was the portrayal of the ronin as unmistakable heroes and as the antagonists as clearly vile villains. I prefer when both sides of a story are portrayed. While not every other is capable of doing it, the book has a clearly drawn line of the two sides with not a lot of wiggle room. The good guys are clearly the good guys, and the bad guys are clearly the bad guys.
All in all, it’s a good book for light reading.
47 Ronin is based on an historical event in feudal Japan and the story is part of the culture and mythology. Because I was going to visit Japan, I was interested in reading books set there. 47 Ronin fit the bill and I enjoyed reading it while also being able to visit some of the temples and castles and grounds mentioned in the book. The book helped me visualize 18th century Japan.
But the prose and story telling is somewhat stilted and awkward. If you want to understand this event, then this book will help bring it to life. The foreword also includes some interesting historical context that helps separate the reality from the mythology. But if you're looking for an exciting tale of adventure and revenge, there are many other books available that would be more gripping.