Barry Lancet and “Tokyo Kill” – Sep 7th 2014

Sunday September 7th, Kinokuniya Bookstore. I attended a live appearance and book signing by author Barry Lancet, who unveiled his new novel “Tokyo Kill”, the second in the series featuring private investigator Jim Brodie.
Having read the first book in the series, “Japantown”, I was very interested to see what the second would be like. Lancet combines the elements of a best-selling thriller with an accurate portrayal of current Japanese society; the main subject of the talk was the painstaking efforts taken to make sure that everything was authentic and every character was believable. In the wake of certain big-budget books and films that made a mish-mash of Japanese and Chinese culture, this was something quite close to the audience’s heart. Lancet has lived in Japan for twenty-five years and now divides his time between Tokyo and San Francisco, so if you’re looking for the real, gritty, sweat-and-blood-stained Japan, this is it.

The story kicks off just after the conclusion of “Japantown”, when Brodie is looking for a little downtime after the case that nearly destroyed him and his family. What he finds, however, is the son of an elderly World War II veteran, with a fantastic tale of lost wartime treasure and Chinese Triads. Brodie is still considering the case when the son is viciously murdered … and from then on, it’s personal.
Although it’s true that you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover, this one is worth a special mention. Along with the strong visual appeal of the font and color scheme, the cover features an excellent depiction of the Sumida river at night. This, according to Barry’s presentation, refers to a speedboat chase scene in the novel that I’m looking forward to reading when I get that far (Reviews will follow!) There’s another first, for readers of this blog who are interested in my Shitamachi news and explorations. Apparently this is the first English-language novel to feature the Sky Tree on the front! Result!!
And here’s a close-up …

About J P Catton

Speculative storytelling and skewed fiction: the blog and website of author John Paul Catton.
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4 Responses to Barry Lancet and “Tokyo Kill” – Sep 7th 2014

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