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La cinquième profession

3.97 of 5 stars 3.97  ·  rating details  ·  1,722 ratings  ·  51 reviews
From the bestselling author of First Blood comes a spectacular thriller, in which a former Navy SEAL and a Japanese samurai master are bound together in a terrifying past that never happened.
Mass Market Paperback, 539 pages
Published June 1st 1992 by LGF (first published January 1st 1969)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 2,362)
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Andy Connell
Started off good, got kinda annoying, got annoying, got dumb, got retarded, got jesus fucking christ./
Jessica McReaderpants
This book started out great, mystery intrigue spying and bodyguard-ing. Then it took a left turn out of interesting into crazy town. Spoiler Alert* Their brains were messed with. So it goes on and on and on Matrix style with is this a dream is this a real memory or is this fabricated. Chapter after chapter as they are chased and chase people. Oh and then all of a sudden the woman who was saved is suddenly and inexplicably in love with our protagonist. Seriously there is hardly any meaningful con ...more
Guido Henkel
What a missed opportunity. Morrell is probably one of the sloppiest bestselling writers around. While the story could have been cool, the book is bogged down by his repetitive writing style - what's up with those karate-callused hands in every second paragraph and Morrell's obsession with people tasting bile on a constant basis - to name only a few.

On top of that he forgets and drops an entire major plot line halfway through the novel and offers up a finale that makes neither sense nor does it o
Arun Divakar
The book starts off like an action flick from the 80’s which stars two heroes and a heroine oozes sexuality. Since one of them is a Caucasian and the other a Japanese, I am going to assume for Hollywood’s sake that we will put in Mel Gibson and Chow Yun Fat as the protagonists. The movie trailers tell us that one of them is a Navy SEAL and the other is trained in the Samurai arts. They are executive protectors of the first order and both get sent on a mission to Greece. You settle in with popcor ...more
This is the 2nd time I read this book. The first time was way back when I was in college. All I remembered was that I had found the book to be awesome then. Well after hundreds of thrillers later, thousands of life experiences later, a few paradigm shifts in my personal outlook towards life, I enjoyed the book but not THAT much. What I had once labelled as awesome has now fallen back into being a good "One Time Read" page turner.

The plot is a bit far-fetched. It starts off in a furious and lucid
While many of the elements of fiction I loved were in place, interesting protagonists, intriguing settings, brain-bending true-to-life science (neuroscience), spies, assassins, questionable memories, martial arts, and moving action, I felt the end lacked... something. It didn't feel like the most powerful ending that Morrell could have written. On the whole, I liked the book and will lend it out to my friends. I learned a lot, though, about Executive Protectors, tradecraft, Japan, and Japanese C ...more
Frank Smith
I REALLY tried to be patient with this author [David Morrell], I thought I could get past his endless attempts to try and show he had researched his books and CONSTANTLY seemed to delight in stuffing examples of this into his book by having one character explain yet another thing to another character, I thought I could get past the way his characters seemed to speak like they were in a really bad 70s movie, but I lost it when towards the end of this book, one of the main two characters is behead ...more
Tyson Adams
How do you tell if a book has samurai in it? Don't worry, they'll put a katana on the cover. A book about ninjas is a little harder, since they are invisible to anyone that hasn't just been killed by a ninja. How do you tell if a book is a thriller? Don't worry, they'll put a gun on the cover.

Professional protectors - the fifth profession.... get it! - Savage and Akira are teamed up to protect a travelling businessman. Things go horribly wrong and Savage is beaten to a pulp after seeing the busi
Davio Smitti
Savage and Akira, “protectors,” aka bodyguards, aka "The Fifth Profession," are severely injured at a meeting...but when they compare notes, each saw the other killed—in fact, beheaded, right after their client was killed. Problem: all are still alive. False memories via surg procedure. Sidebar of love story with Rachel. Just too many wild improbabilities for me, leaps of illogic...glad when I was done that it was over.
I read this book many years ago (most likely more than once) and I really liked it, so when I saw it in my mom's bookshelf I borrowed it to re-read it.

Morrell's style of writing is quite straight-forward, so it's easy to read.

The story is interesting and thrilling, I like that we get to learn a bit more about Japanese culture and history and I find the idea of modern samurais kind of cool.

We get the story about two men who work as executive protectors, Savage who is American and Akira who is J
executive protectors are hired. they watch like body guards or help others out. the main character rescues a woman from her abusive husband and starts a ball rolling on who wants who killed. the main character and a ninja he meets has to find out why each other thought they saw the other die 6 months ago.
This book started off as a real thriller and I couldn't put it down but then it took a left turn and got really stupid. Very disappointing from David Morrell.
I really like the first third or so of this book - and then it goes from being a great action book to some sort of weird sci-fi mind-alteration book.
Jim C
A novel about a man who is a protector is hired to rescue a woman from an abusive husband. As the mission progresses, he sees a person who is suppose to be dead which leads to many unanswered questions.
This book had plenty of action to keep the reader interested. I enjoyed the first half book much more than the second half. The second half had more to do with the conspiracy and to me, the conspiracy became too much. I did enjoy the aspects of Japanese life that was in this book. If you are goin
Action packed. Enjoyed the book.
I read this one in college some twenty years ago. I can't remember much, but it still resonates. A bodyguard rescues a movie star's sister from her abusive Greek husband's island fortress. There's also a modern day Japanese Samurai the bodyguard teams up with. There's also something about false memories not to mention the hit teams pursuing them. Give it a shot.

Reviewed by, David Feeney, author; Terror on the high seas
It was a pretty decent book over all. It did an excellent job the reader in suspense until the end of the book. My major complaint with the book was that the author seemed very fond of particular descriptive phrases. These phrases appeared way too many times in my opinion. "Karate calloused hands", "Sad, melancholy eyes", "Jamais vu". It was so repetitive it became very annoying. You would think a professional writer could come up with different words for essentially describing similar situation ...more
Great book! David Morrell pens some great stories. They seem somewhat unique to me, not so much in plot or characters themselves, but how the story is crafted; how the plot develops and the action within the story. A lot of action, fast paced, moving quickly from chapter to chapter. I can't compare this writer to any other I've read so far. He definitely has a distinct style and one I am quite pleased with. I look forward to my next Morrell book.
This is one of David Morrell's earlier novels. As much as I enjoy his work, this novel contained too many internal conflicts, personal conflicts, locations, and characters for my taste. It is action packed from beginning to end and if that is your type of book you may enjoy this.
At one time, The Fifth Profession was the bestselling book of Morrell's career. While not my personal favorite of his, with The Brotherhood of the Rose and The Fraternity of the Stone still my two favorite works of fiction ever written, The Fifth Profession is an exciting read that never lets up and takes the reader on a journey into a foreign world that many have never encountered.
A fast paced trip through, Japan, Europe and the U.S.A. with some good plot turns, interesting twists and lots of actions. The life of an “executive protector” is always interesting, but what do you do when everything you have known to be true turns out to be a lie. That’s the question facing Savage and Akira in novel.
Naee Lee
This book is a M A S T E R P I E C E
Sean D
I really liked the book it was very original and interesting. It does make you pay attention otherwise you may get lost because it involves alot of plot turns in the beggining. I would recomend this book to anyone who likes action, mystery, and originality.
Luke Bishop
Apr 24, 2013 Luke Bishop added it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Noone
I would NEVER recommend this book to anyone.
This was a let down of EPIC proportions.
Brilliant idea.
The execution was tragic.
This COULD have been a short story for all of the over descriptions and adjectives.

I didn't even finish it.
I couldn't.
About a "protector" who has had his "memories" altered. He must solve the problem of what is real and what is imaginary so that he can save the person he is assigned to protect as well as himself. I enjoyed the suspense of this story.
I was out of things to read so I raided the wife's bin of books in the basement. This seemed to be the least bad of what I could find that I haven't already read.

That's the best I can think of to say about this book.
Morrell tops nearly every author in terms of orchestrating a plot that really intrigues and stays ahead of the reader's predictions. Some suspension of disbelief is required here, but the plot helps make up for this.
From the bestselling author of First Blood comes a spectacular thriller, in which a former Navy SEAL and a Japanese samurai master are bound together in a terrifying past that never happened.
From memory, I did actually pick this up in an airport. It's a serviceable thriller with all the required elements, but it does have one particular gimmick that revolves around memory.
Lucas Spann
Not that good. Lots of mistranslations and the characters talk like over emotional 14 year olds... or maybe that's just how Navy Seals and contemporary "Samurai" talk?
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David Morrell is a Canadian novelist from Kitchener, Ontario, who has been living in the United States for a number of years. He is best known for his debut 1972 novel First Blood, which would later become a successful film franchise starring Sylvester Stallone. More recently, he has been writing the Captain America comic books limited-series The Chosen.
More about David Morrell...

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