Samurai!

Seven Samurai

By Akira Kurosawa

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A 16th-century Japanese farming community has been victimized by bandits, year after year. Desperate to find some means of ending the terror, the villagers hire seven unemployed samurai to help defend them. Film formed the basis of The Magnificent Seven and Battle Beyond the Stars.
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Shinju

By Laura Joh Rowland

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When beautiful, wealthy Yukiko and low-born artist Noriyoshi are found drowned together in a shinju, or ritual double suicide, everyone believes the culprit was forbidden love. Everyone but newly appointed yoriki Sano Ichiro, who follows the samurai code.

Despite the official verdict and warnings from his superiors, the shogun's Most Honorable Investigator of Events, Situations, and People suspects the deaths weren't just a tragedy -- they were murder. Risking his family's good name and his own life, Sano will search for a killer across every level of society -- determined to find answers to a mystery no one wants solved. No one but Sano...

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Shogun: A Novel of Japan

By James Clavell

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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 a mighty saga of a time and place aflame with conflict, passion, ambition, desire and the struggle for power.

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The Book of the Sword

By Richard Francis Burton

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Eloquent, erudite history of the sword--from prehistory to early Roman Empire. Evolution and development of early swords, variations (sabre, broadsword, cutlass, scimitar, etc.), and much more.

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The Chrysanthemum and the Sword: Patterns of Japanese Culture

By Ruth Benedict

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A recognized classic of cultural anthropology, this book explores the political, religious, and economic life of Japan from the seventh century through the mid-twentieth, as well as personal family life.

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The Last Samurai: The Life and Battles of Saig? Takamori

By Mark Ravina

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The dramatic arc of Saigo Takamori's life, from his humble origins as a lowly samurai, to national leadership, to his death as a rebel leader, has captivated generations of Japanese readers and now Americans as well - his life is the inspiration for a major Hollywood film.

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The Samurai

By Shusaku Endo

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This blending of fact and fiction from a gifted author tells the story of some of the first Japanese to set foot on European soil in the 1600s. Rokuemon Hasekura, a low-ranking warrior, is chosen as one of Japan's envoys to the Viceroy of Mexico and Pope Paul V.

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