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Tokyo Kill (Jim Brodie Series #2)
     

Tokyo Kill (Jim Brodie Series #2)

4.5 6
by Barry Lancet
 

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“A stellar novel of action, adventure, and intrigue. Jim Brodie is a true twenty-first century hero…On page after page of Tokyo Kill, skeletons bang on every closet door longing to be set free—and Barry Lancet delivers.”
—Steve Berry, New York Times bestselling author of The Lincoln Myth

“Lancet’s

Overview

“A stellar novel of action, adventure, and intrigue. Jim Brodie is a true twenty-first century hero…On page after page of Tokyo Kill, skeletons bang on every closet door longing to be set free—and Barry Lancet delivers.”
—Steve Berry, New York Times bestselling author of The Lincoln Myth

“Lancet’s familiarity with Japanese history and culture, combined with his storytelling skills, make this a first-rate mystery…a clear indicator that the author considers Jim Brodie a series-worthy character. He’d be right, too.”
Booklist

“Boasting surefire characters including the taciturn, thick-chested chief detective Noda and notorious crime figure called TNT who owes Brodie favors…[Lancet’s] series remains highly distinctive.”
—Kirkus Reviews

In the second thriller of this new series from “a fresh voice in crime fiction” (Kirkus Reviews), antiques dealer-turned-P.I. Jim Brodie matches wits with an elusive group of killers chasing a long-lost treasure that has a dangerous history.

When an elderly World War II veteran shows up unannounced at Brodie Security begging for protection, the staff thinks he’s just a paranoid old man. He offers up a story connected to the war and to Chinese Triads operating in present-day Tokyo, insisting that he and his few surviving army buddies are in danger.

Fresh off his involvement in solving San Francisco’s Japantown murders, antiques dealer Jim Brodie had returned to Tokyo for some R&R, and to hunt down a rare ink painting by the legendary Japanese Zen master Sengai for one of his clients—not to take on another case with his late father’s P.I. firm. But out of respect for the old soldier, Brodie agrees to provide a security detail, thinking it’ll be an easy job and end when the man comes to his senses.

Instead, an unexpected, brutal murder rocks Brodie and his crew, sending them deep into the realm of the Triads, Chinese spies, kendo warriors, and an elusive group of killers whose treachery spans centuries—and who will stop at nothing to complete their mission.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
07/07/2014
Lancet’s second novel featuring Tokyo-based PI Jim Brodie falls short of the high standard set by his debut, 2013’s Japantown. Brodie agrees to take the case of Akira Miura, a 93-year-old former soldier, who freely admits he committed war crimes as a young man on duty in China during Japan’s occupation in the years before WWII. In recent weeks, Miura claims, several of his surviving fellow soldiers have been murdered in a series of home invasions, and he wants Brodie to investigate as well as provide protection. Miura suspects a vigilante Chinese triad is behind the killings, but Brody quickly figures out something else is at stake. As the case progresses, Brodie encounters a series of sneering, interchangeable bad guys in a plot that consists of scene after confrontational scene involving knife fights, poisonings, and martial arts showdowns with little supporting structure in between. Repetitive, aimless dialogue doesn’t help. Agent: Robert Gottlieb, Trident Media Group. (Sept.)
Book Reporter
"Brodie is immediately noteworthy as one of the more interesting characters in the thriller universe...a book worth reading and a series worth starting."
Deadly Pleasures
“This excellent mystery has many layers and the reader (and Brodie) is kept guessing throughout. The ending was quite a surprise.”

The New York Times Book Review
“[A] sophisticated international thriller . . . Having lived and worked in Japan for more than 25 years, Lancet brings an impressive breadth of knowledge to the historical aspects of the mystery and a sharp sense of immediacy to its action.”
From the Publisher
“A stellar novel of action, adventure, and intrigue. Jim Brodie is a true 21st century hero, part of the new, gritty mythos, warts and all, but capable of turning the ordinary into the extraordinary. On page after page of Tokyo Kill, skeletons bang on every closet door longing to be set free—and Barry Lancet delivers.”
—Steve Berry, New York Times bestselling author of The Lincoln Myth

“[A] sophisticated international thriller . . . Having lived and worked in Japan for more than 25 years, Lancet brings an impressive breadth of knowledge to the historical aspects of the mystery and a sharp sense of immediacy to its action.”
The New York Times Book Review

"Lancet imbues 'Tokyo Kill' with a vivid sense of Japan, from sections of Tokyo that only a native would know about to meticulous research into the country's history and legends... Lancet hit the ground running last year with his superb debut, 'Japantown,' and continues that winning streak with 'Tokyo Kill.'"
New York Times/AP

"Boasting surefire characters including the taciturn, thick-chested chief detective Noda and notorious crime figure called TNT who owes Brodie favors...[Lancet's] series remains highly distinctive."
— Kirkus Reviews

"An impressive novel of spirited adventure and edgy intrigue. It's obvious Lancet has firsthand knowledge of Japan and has done extensive research regarding the historical elements. This, along with realistic characterization and notable plot development, makes Tokyo Kill a dynamic read.”
Fresh Fiction

“Barry Lancet, an American expat who has lived in Japan for more than two decades, [weaves] in history, art, cuisine and martial arts seamlessly. Readers who enjoy fast-paced tales of intrigue are in for a treat.”
Minneapolis Star-Tribune

“The author's familiarity with Japanese history and culture, combined with his storytelling skills, make this a first-rate mystery . . . a clear indicator that Lancet considers Jim Brodie a series-worthy character. He'd be right, too.”
Booklist

"An excellent mystery that ... offers some nuanced understandings of the China-Japan relationship."
Forbes.com

"Brodie is immediately noteworthy as one of the more interesting characters in the thriller universe...a book worth reading and a series worth starting."
Book Reporter

“Lancet successfully places a PI in an international thriller plot in his highly entertaining debut . . . Readers will want to see more of the talented Jim Brodie, with his expertise in Japanese culture, history, and martial arts.”
Publishers Weekly (starred review)

“A solid mystery with a memorable protagonist, the book captures our interest from the first page.”
Booklist

"Not only Barry Lancet provide plenty of thrills as the story is told, but there's fascinating detail about so many subjects related to Japanese history and art... The book delivers on every level, both as a thriller and as a look inside an Asian culture with which many Westerners may not be familiar."
ReviewingTheEvidence.com

“This excellent mystery has many layers and the reader (and Brodie) is kept guessing throughout. The ending was quite a surprise.”
Deadly Pleasures

Great action. . .What more could the reader ask for?
—pulplair.blogspot.com

Kirkus Reviews
2014-08-28
Tokyo-based PI and antiques dealer Jim Brodie, introduced in Japantown (2013), is targeted by a lethal gang for investigating the brutal home-invasion murder of two elderly men and their families. A one-time fellow soldier of the slain men, feisty 96-year-old Akira Miura is certain the killings were acts of reprisal. In the years before World War II, when Japan occupied China, Miura's company there shot prisoners to "entertain" their superiors. Now, he insists, the deadly Chinese Triad gangs are out to avenge those crimes. It isn't long before Brodie is defending himself, or trying to, against trained attackers with blades and bamboo weapons. Through the underground Chinese contacts provided by his ambitious female police partner, Rie—a romantic attraction who is indignant over his efforts to protect her—he discovers that a mysterious Japanese crime ring is responsible for the killings, not the Triad. The ultrarare paintings of a Japanese monk a London collector has asked him to find may be at the heart of the mystery. And if all of this isn't enough to worry about, Brodie, whose wife was murdered, must also keep his young daughter safe. His enemies are well-aware of her existence. Though the novel gets off to a crisp start, boasting surefire characters including the taciturn, thick-chested chief detective Noda and a notorious crime figure called TNT who owes Brodie favors, things never rise to the level of excitement or surprise of Japantown. The historical material slows things down. The confrontations lack the cool menace of the ones in the first book. And as serviceable as Barbados is for the climax, the particulars of Brodie's concept all but demand a return to San Francisco, the other town in which he operates. Lancet hits a few bumps the second time around, but his series remains highly distinctive.
Booklist
“The author's familiarity with Japanese history and culture, combined with his storytelling skills, make this a first-rate mystery . . . a clear indicator that Lancet considers Jim Brodie a series-worthy character. He'd be right, too.”
Fresh Fiction
"An impressive novel of spirited adventure and edgy intrigue. It's obvious Lancet has firsthand knowledge of Japan and has done extensive research regarding the historical elements. This, along with realistic characterization and notable plot development, makes Tokyo Kill a dynamic read.”
ReviewingTheEvidence.com
"Not only Barry Lancet provide plenty of thrills as the story is told, but there's fascinating detail about so many subjects related to Japanese history and art... The book delivers on every level, both as a thriller and as a look inside an Asian culture with which many Westerners may not be familiar."
Steve Berry
“A stellar novel of action, adventure, and intrigue. Jim Brodie is a true 21st century hero, part of the new, gritty mythos, warts and all, but capable of turning the ordinary into the extraordinary. On page after page of Tokyo Kill, skeletons bang on every closet door longing to be set free—and Barry Lancet delivers.”
New York Times/AP
"Lancet imbues 'Tokyo Kill' with a vivid sense of Japan, from sections of Tokyo that only a native would know about to meticulous research into the country's history and legends... Lancet hit the ground running last year with his superb debut, 'Japantown,' and continues that winning streak with 'Tokyo Kill.'"
Forbes.com
"An excellent mystery that ... offers some nuanced understandings of the China-Japan relationship."

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781451691726
Publisher:
Simon & Schuster
Publication date:
09/09/2014
Series:
Jim Brodie Series , #2
Pages:
336
Sales rank:
750,659
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.30(d)

Read an Excerpt

Tokyo Kill

CHAPTER 1


TOKYO, 2:36 P.M.

EIGHT people had already died by the time Akira Miura showed up at our door fearing for his life.

When the commotion broke out I’d been on a long-distance call to London trying to track down an original ink painting by Sengai, the renowned Japanese painter-monk of Circle, Triangle, and Square fame. The rumor had come out of the United Kingdom, so I was plying channels to nail down the potential gem for a client in San Francisco who would kill to get it, and kill me if I didn’t.

People killed for a lot less. I learned this anew with each day spent at Brodie Security, the detective agency and personal protection firm established by my father in the Japanese capital more than forty years ago.

Had I been sitting in my antiques shop in San Francisco instead of behind my father’s battered pine desk in Tokyo, I wouldn’t have given the shouting match in the front office a second thought, but in Japan a loud altercation constituted a serious breach of decorum.

If not more.

Mari Kawasaki tapped on my door. “Brodie-san, I think you should get out here.”

All of twenty-three but looking more like sixteen, Mari was the office tech whiz. When I came to town, she lent me a hand. We were a small operation and people wore multiple hats.

“Could I call you back later today?” I asked my London connection. “Something urgent has come up.”

He said certainly and I jotted down his schedule, bid a polite good-bye, and stepped out onto the main floor.

Mari pointed across the room to where three hardened Brodie Security ops had herded a fourth man against a wall. The man cast indignant glares at them, and when my people didn’t wither and fall back, he pelted the trio with the exasperated sighs middle-management salarymen usually fling at underlings.

That didn’t work either.

Mari rolled her eyes. “He charged in here demanding to speak with you and refused to explain himself or wait at reception.”

When the unexpected reared up at Brodie Security, containment came before all else. Our work brought us into contact with every manner of fringe character. Old-timers still talk about the right-wing lunatic who sprang from the elevator with short sword drawn and put two of the staff in the hospital.

“Calm down,” one of the three men cooed. “If you would just return to the reception area . . .”

The salaryman was irate. “But it’s urgent. My father is a sick man. Can’t you see that?” He saw me and yelled across the expanse in Japanese, “Are you Jim Brodie?”

Since I was the only Caucasian in a sea of Asian faces, it wasn’t a brilliant deduction. Our unannounced guest was handsome in the unassuming way Japanese men can be. He was in his fifties and sheathed in the requisite business suit—dark blue in his case—with a white dress shirt and a perfectly knotted red silk tie. The tie had set him back some. What looked like platinum cuff links sparkled at his wrists. His attire was flawless, and under normal circumstances he’d be considered nonthreatening. But his expression was frayed, as if he were unraveling from the inside.

“That’s me,” I said in his native language.

He drew himself up. His eyes grew watery. “Kindly allow my father to intrude. He is not well.”

All eyes shifted toward the paternal figure waiting patiently at Reception. He had a full crown of silver-gray hair and the same unassuming good looks: sculpted cheekbones, a firm chin, and the deep brown eyes women habitually swoon over.

He waved a wooden walking staff in salute, then began a tremulous foray around the unmanned half-counter that passed for Reception in our no-frills office. With singular determination he shuffled forward. His hands trembled. The cane shook. He wheezed with each step. And yet, there was something noble in the effort.

He had dressed for the trip into town. A brown hand-tailored suit that had gone out of style maybe three decades ago. As he drew closer the smell of mothballs suggested his attire had been plucked from a dusty clothes rack expressly for this visit.

Three feet away, he stopped. He squinted up at me with unflinching brown eyes. “Are you the gaijin the papers said caught the Japantown killers in San Francisco?”

Gaijin means “foreigner,” literally “outside person.”

“Guilty as charged.”

“And tackled the Japanese mafia before that?”

“Guilty again.”

For better or worse, the overseas murders and my run-in with the Tokyo thugs had made headlines in Japan.

“Then you’re my man. Got notches on your belt.”

I smiled and his son, who had sidled up on the other side, whispered in my ear. “That’s his meds talking. Makes him emotional. Sometimes delusional. I only mentioned coming here to calm him. I never thought he’d actually do it.”

His father frowned. He hadn’t heard what was said, but he was astute enough to guess the content. “My son thinks I’ve toppled off the train because I’ve put on a few years. Well, I’m ninety-three, and until last December I could walk three miles a day without a damn stick.”

“A few years? You’re ninety-six, Dad. You shouldn’t be charging around town like this.”

The old man waved the cane under his son’s nose. “You call this charging? There are tombstones in Aoyama Cemetery that move faster than I do, but upstairs my train’s still running on straight tracks. Besides, when a man my age no longer wants to shave off a couple years to impress the ladies, then he’s done for.”

I was going to like this guy.

I said, “Why don’t we step into my office? It’s quiet there. Mari, would you show these gentlemen the way? I’ll be there in a minute.”

“Follow me, please,” she said.

Once Mari had shut them in, I turned to a pale-faced detective nearest the entrance. “Anything else besides their showing up without an appointment?”

“Only the last name. Miura.”

“Okay, thanks. Do you know where Noda is?”

Kunio Noda was our head detective and the main reason I came away from the Japantown case in one piece.

“He’s out on the kidnapping case in Asakusa but supposed to be back shortly.”

“Send him in as soon as he arrives, okay?”

“Will do.”

I headed back to my office, where I exchanged cards and the customary bows with the new arrivals. The father’s name was Akira Miura and he’d once been senior vice president of a major Japanese trading company.

The son with the pricey tie was a fuku bucho, or assistant section chief, at Kobo Electronics. His company was equally impressive but his position was not, especially for a Japanese salaryman in his fifties. You didn’t start making good money until you hit bucho, the next step up for Yoji Miura, so either he was spending beyond his means or there was money trickling in from another source.

Taking my seat I said, “So, gentlemen, how can I help?”

Before they could respond, Mari knocked and entered. On a tray she carried green tea in decorated porcelain cups with lids. Guest chinaware. In Japan, courtesy rules.

“I was in the war, Mr. Brodie,” Akira Miura said after Mari departed.

When a Japanese mentions the war, he or she means World War II. And only the youngest soldiers—now the oldest surviving veterans—were around today. Japan fought no further battles after the big Double Two.

“I see,” I said.

Miura Senior’s eyes zeroed in on me. “How much do you know about Japanese history, Mr. Brodie?”

“Quite a bit, actually.”

My endeavors in the field of Japanese art made knowledge of the country’s history, culture, and traditions mandatory.

“Did you know that in the old Japanese army you followed orders without question, or your commanding officer put a bullet in your head?”

“Yes.”

“Good. Then you probably also know that my country conquered part of Manchuria and set up a puppet state.”

I did, and he seemed pleased.

Japan had entered China aggressively in the early 1900s, then cemented its grasp by laying railroads, bringing in settlers, and setting up branches of its large conglomerates. In 1932 it famously resurrected the rule of China’s twelfth and final Qing Dynasty ruler, Pu Yi, canonized in popular culture as the Last Emperor.

Miura said, “I was sent to the Manchurian front in 1940 as an officer. My men and I fought many battles. Then new orders shifted us to a frontier outpost called Anli-dong. Our assignment was to stabilize the region, and I became the de facto mayor of Anli and the surrounding area.

“We were outnumbered two hundred to one, but by that time the Japanese military had a reputation so fierce we retained control without incident. Although I preached nonviolence and it held, my predecessor had been ruthless. Any Chinese male offender faced a firing squad or worse, and his women became the spoils of war. Which is why I need you.”

“For something that happened more than seventy years ago?”

“You’ve heard about the recent home invasions in Tokyo?”

“Sure. Two families slaughtered within six days of each other. Eight people were killed.”

“You saw the police suspect Triads?”

“Of course.”

“They’re right.”

Inwardly I cringed at the mention of the blade-wielding Chinese gangs. I’d run into them in San Francisco once when I lived out in the Mission. It hadn’t ended well.

“How can you be so sure?”

Miura’s handsome brown eyes flooded with fear. “In Anli-dong they told me they would come after us. Now they have.”

Meet the Author

Barry Lancet is a Barry Award­–winning author and finalist for the Shamus Award. He has lived in Japan for more than twenty-five years. His former position as an editor at one of the nation’s largest publishers gave him access to the inner circles in traditional and business fields most outsiders are never granted, and an insider’s view that informs his writing. He is the author of the Jim Brodie series: The Spy Across the Table; Pacific Burn; Tokyo Kill; and Japantown, which received four citations for Best First Novel and has been optioned by J.J. Abrams’s Bad Robot Productions, in association with Warner Brothers. Visit Lancet at BarryLancet.com or on Twitter @BarryLancet.

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Tokyo Kill (Jim Brodie Series #2) 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 6 reviews.
tedfeit0 More than 1 year ago
Jim Brodie made his initial appearance in “Japantown,” an action-packed thriller and the series debut. He now returns in a novel which is no less filled with derring-do and lots of exotic descriptions of Japanese culture and history. Brodie inherited a half-interest in Brodie Security, founded by his late father and headquartered in Tokyo, and also operates an art dealership, which he claims is his main profession, in San Francisco. In Tokyo seeking a rare painting, Brodie is approached by a 90-year-old veteran of World War II asking for protection because members of his military detachment in Manchuria during the war-time occupation by Japan were being murdered. After he supplies a security detail, events take over the course of the rest of the novel, as Brodie investigates the possibility of Triads, Chinese spies and others as the culprits. And that takes on a life of its own. The author has lived and worked in Japan for more than a quarter century, and the flavor and information about the country permeates with authenticity throughout the novel. His description of various types of martial arts practiced in Japan is a further exhibit of his expertise. Powerfully written, “Tokyo Kill” is a very enjoyable read, and this reader is looking forward to additions to the series. Recommended.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
What a thriller of a story it's beginning, "Tokyo." What gave that away :D Brodie on vacation, he mixed in some business. His business Brodie's Investigation. Supposedly in Tokyo for relaxation but he needs to find a painting for a client. Next thing an elderly Japanese army veteran named Miura enters Brodie's life. Miura's two army buddies and their families were murdered now Miura believe he is next on the hit list. This story takes you to the ruthless side of Tokyo and introduce you to ruthless killers and I mean ruthless. From Chinese Triads to Yakuza and organized crime society, boy this story had it all. I like how the author maneuver Japanese arts and it's history in this story, and samurai swords? Talk about action, this book had it too! The author threw in a love interest and Brodie really needed a distraction. A much needed distraction to put fuel to the fire. Right now Brodie has his hands full, perfect action thriller. A whirlwind of a story filled with much excitement and action to satiate your appetite. Writing? Very persuasive writing. Why? You made me believe. I won this book on Goodreads, First Read Giveaway. Thank you, Darlene Cruz
Buecherwurm161 More than 1 year ago
What an Entertaining Read!  I was a First Read Winner of this book, and it had me hooked from page one.  I loved the characters, action and intrigue, it had me guessing until the end who'd done it and I especially enjoyed the Author's vast knowledge about Japan and its customs and art.  I had a hard time putting the book down and I did not want it to end because I was thoroughly entertained.  This will not be my last book by Barry Lancet and I can't wait to see what he will write next.  
RRatliff More than 1 year ago
I won a copy of this book through Goodreads Firstreads. Barry Lancet's second Jim Brodie book is just as good as the first! I love that Lancet's hero is not just another bruiser with some specialized skills - he has created a more unique premise for a hero. The first Brodie book focused on kind of a mix of his opposing occupations in art/antiquities and specialized private security. The art and antiques are certainly still a part of the second Brodie book, but I don't think there's as much about that side of Brodie's business in Tokyo Kill.  This book is non-stop action. I just kept reading trying to get Brodie out of his latest scrape before closing my book for the night, and it was an almost impossible task. It seemed like he could hardly get past one brush with the bad guys before falling into another. I thoroughly enjoyed the fast pace of the plot, and was completely hooked, beginning to end, despite typically being a historical fiction reader. I would absolutely read more if the series continues.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Smiled again
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
She kissed him back then rolled over off of him.