View Full Version : Japanese historical novels

Greg W
10-02-2005, 09:55:47
(Note, interested in Japanese, Chinses, Korean or similar, not just Japanese as per the title)

Anyone know any good novels that cover Asian history? About my only experience to date has been a translated book by Miyamoto Musashi. Not sure of the title - it may have been the 5 rings, but I am not sure - I remember the start is him and a friend going off to a big battle which they barely survive. In it he develops the method of fighting with two swords at the same time.

And about the only other one that I know of is James Clavell's (spelling?) Shogun. Which I really should get around to reading.

Oh, and I did read a few by Eric van Lustbader (Ninja, Miko) quite a few years ago, though they weren't quite historical (they had some flashbacks from memory).

Looking for something to read, any suggestions in that genre?

10-02-2005, 10:15:43
James Clavell's Shogun and his other books are well worth reading. I really enjoyed them. There are a whole series, beginning with Shogun, that pretty much cover the first western contact with Japan through other major west/east events to relatively modern times. Shogun was the best though.

11-02-2005, 07:56:51
3 Kingdoms and Journey to the West are the two most famous Chinese novels. I don't know much about 3 Kingdoms, but Journey to the West is so pervasive in Chinese media that there are about 20 TV shows and movies about it or related to it. Also, the characters in the japanese anime Dragonball are inspired (nearly directly copied) from Journey to the West.

Greg W
13-02-2005, 01:38:55
Thanks, I'll check them out. Any other suggestions?

Greg W
13-02-2005, 01:42:06
Three Kingdoms - would that be:
Romance of the Three Kingdoms Volume 1:Tuttle Classics of Asian Literature

Kuang-Chung Lo
This text represents Kuan-Chung Lo's retelling of the events attending the fall of the Han Dynasty in 220 AD. It is an epic saga of brotherhood and rivalry, loyalty and treachery, victory and death that is as important for Chinese culture as the Homeric epics have been for the West.

Greg W
16-02-2005, 17:29:07
Can't believe that's all the suggestions that I got. Mustn't be a well read genre I suppose...