Thoughts about books, publishing and writing
Way back in the 80's I discovered spy thrillers. It may seem odd reading for a teenage girl but what can I say? I read what was available at home before I could buy my own books and my dad was the big reader and he read thrillers. (although I shared a lot the same reading interests as my mom too, like The Thorn Birds) I want to say it was around 1983 or so when I haunted the bookstores looking for the latest in the genre. I had read The Ninja, by Eric Van Lustbader, not long before I spotted Shibumi, by Trevanian. The fact that I still remember this book almost 40 years later means it must have been pretty good! Here's the description so you can decide for yourself:
A classic spy novel from the bestselling author, Trevanian, about a westerner raised in Japan who becomes one of the world's most accomplished assassins
Nicholai Hel is the world’s most wanted man. Born in Shanghai during the chaos of World War I, he is the son of an aristocratic Russian mother and a mysterious German father and is the protégé of a Japanese Go master. Hel survived the destruction of Hiroshima to emerge as the world’s most artful lover and its most accomplished—and well-paid—assassin. Hel is a genius, a mystic, and a master of language and culture, and his secret is his determination to attain a rare kind of personal excellence, a state of effortless perfection known only as shibumi.
Now living in an isolated mountain fortress with his exquisite mistress, Hel is unwillingly drawn back into the life he’d tried to leave behind when a beautiful young stranger arrives at his door, seeking help and refuge. It soon becomes clear that Hel is being tracked by his most sinister enemy—a supermonolith of international espionage known only as the Mother Company. The battle lines are drawn: ruthless power and corruption on one side, and on the other . . . shibumi.