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Blood Ninja

(Blood Ninja #1)

3.95  ·  Rating details ·  1,701 ratings  ·  155 reviews
Is Taro, a fisherman's son, destined for greatness?

In the course of a day, Taro's entire life changes: His father is murdered before his eyes, and Taro is taken by a mysterious ninja on a perilous journey toward safety. Someone wants Taro dead, but who -- and why? With his best friend, Hiro, and their ninja guide Shusaku, Taro gets caught in the crossfire of a bitter confl
Hardcover, 384 pages
Published December 1st 2009 by Simon Schuster Books for Young Readers (first published November 17th 2009)
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Average rating 3.95  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,701 ratings  ·  155 reviews

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Dec 17, 2009 marked it as to-read
Ninja vampires. It was only a matter of time.
Mar 08, 2010 rated it liked it
Young Taro is living the simple life of a fisherman with his best friend Hiro until he is assaulted by ninjas in his humble village.

Luckily he is saved by a mysterious ninja (hehehe) named Shusaku but before they are safe Taro is fatally wounded and must choose between death or becoming a myth - vampire.

Blood Ninja is an excellent book although I had a few issues with the end. It was like a Quentin Tarantino movie. But more on that later...

The characters feel real and the story is great if not a
Jul 06, 2010 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Dec 30, 2010 rated it really liked it
I got this book through the Amazon Vine program. I like vampires and ninjas so I thought it would be an interesting read. I was a little worried (based on the title and the cover) that this book would be too corny for me or a bit over the top. It was neither of those. It was very well-done and, if anything, a bit too devoid of any humor. It is also not a stand-alone book, which I didn't know.

Taro is a fisherman's son. At least that is what he is raised to believe. He is in for a rude surprise wh
ninja guy 1234
Mar 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I think this is a wonderful book, this story is extremely interesting and full of action, this is the kind of book that you'll want to stay up all night reading.
Feb 11, 2011 rated it did not like it
I wish this would have been translated badly over to english from japanese. Atleast that would give this book an excuse for the crappy dialogue that has now infected my brain.

I've never seen a book. That uses. So many. Periods. Throughout the dialogue. To explain. Things that could. Easily be. Explained without. The periods. At all. Thus we. Have sentences. Like this.
Except that they are badly written and much much more confusing. Did they really talk like that?
The characters reactions to....ev
Nov 23, 2009 rated it it was ok
I read this as a review ARC for VOYA, it's one of the few books they assign to me that I would have never read otherwise. It features ninjas who are also vampires, so my first question naturally was: are ninja vampires the Reeses peanut butter cup of literature, two great tastes that taste great together? The answer is yes and no- there was a great emphasis on the ninja angle and the bloodsuckers sort of got short shrift. The book was okay, but if a vampire fan reads it expecting to get lots of ...more
Jan 08, 2020 rated it liked it
I love the characters and the main plot of the story, but there are weaknesses in other areas. The mythos, for one, has some holes. Some of the circumstances in the story are a little too conveniently explained by folk tales that randomly pop up here and there. In that aspect, the author's world building was not strong enough. Nor do I like the idea of *spoiler* all ninja being vampires because, I mean, how else could they have been so fast, strong, and silent? Oh, yes, and that's also why they ...more
Highness Atharva
Dec 01, 2018 rated it really liked it
Book Review
*Blood Ninja* by Nick Lake
This book is quite different in almost all aspects when compared to other samurai/ninja/vampire book, maybe because there’s a perfectly balanced blending of action, thrill and a solid storyline which combines the Eastern and Western Cultures effortlessly. I’m really glad I read this book and of course I’m going to continue the series. Such books deserve a lot of attention and praise. I couldn’t find any plot summary at tall on the internet so I thought about
Mar 14, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Great story. Enjoyed the beginning and middle parts a lot. I know that most of the 'twists' were super obvious and could be seen coming from a mile off. But, the author still kept me invested in the story. Towards the end things got a bit contrived, forced too much. Still, an exciting read
Aug 03, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-2010
Blood Ninja completely blew me away with its creativity. I mean ninjas and vampires... in the same novel. How awesome is that? But I quickly realized that Blood Ninja was also different for another reason.

As a reader and a lover of the Japanese culture, I almost instantly appreciated Lake's eye for detail. He infuses so much of the Japanese culture into Blood Ninja. From the lush setting to the epic tales, I was completely in heaven. However, for readers not familiar with Japanese culture, it is
Apr 05, 2010 rated it liked it
Ninja is actually vampire!
This is quite an original story ( I never even find any manga that has similar idea). Because of that, I started reading with a jubilant mode, expecting to be entertained.
The execution is not as good as the idea.
First, I don't like the main character, Taro. Character wise, he was raw. He tends to be repetitive ( See second reason), a bit of an idiot ( but didn't know it), and somehow has the best of luck out of all the characters ( the fact that he's still int
Jul 25, 2010 rated it it was ok
Shelves: ya
I was dubious at first, picking up this book already knowing it was another story cashing in on the vampire explosion. I was pleasantly surprised. The vampire part was, by all means, downplayed and I believe the story was better for it. It's like a buddy flick for boys in print. And it's not just for the boys, the world of Ninja represents for the girls too.
Though some of the characters seem less defined and not as full as some of the others, I am more inclined to believe it is because the char
Tabitha Olson
May 09, 2010 rated it it was ok
Shelves: recent-reviews
The first half of this book held my interest intensely. I could hardly put it down. But the second half slowed down significantly, and the main character started doing things that I had a hard time believing he would do (such as the incident with his bow). From that first incident, there were many more, and it seemed like a different set of characters had taken over the story. Also, the prose switched from engaging and interesting to dry and a bit verbose. As a result, I struggled through the se ...more
Emma Pack
Sep 29, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Dec 22, 2016 rated it it was ok
Shelves: japan, ya
To be honest, I was hovering between a 2 and a 3 on this one. I decided on a 3 since the ending was, well, quite a twist, and the last fifth or so of the book made up for the lack of movement in the first four-fifths.

My main issue with Blood Ninja was the writing. A little rough, a little unpolished at times, wrought with unnecessary descriptions that read like fanfiction. The writing improved a little as the book progessed -- although that may be because those descriptions ended up tying into
Jul 08, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: teen
Taro's whole life has been spent in a small fishing village on the coast of Japan. He hunts while his dad fishes and his mom dives for treasures to sell to passing merchants. One night, ninjas attack the village, killing Taro's father and wounding his mom. One of the ninjas, Shusaku, rescues him before the other ninjas can finish their mission. Together with Hiro, Taro's best friend, they set off for the ninja headquarters to train both Taro and Hiro, and to keep Taro safe.

Taro is special. He's
Jan 27, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I picked this up from my library on sale because I thought the cover was cool and i have to admit I was pleasantly surprised by it! I really enjoyed the historical lore and the story was decent , even if a bit predictable. I loved how my two favourite things were combined into one... not ninjas, not vampires but VAMPIRE NINJAS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I am going to continue reading the series mainly because of the last point ;)
Jul 18, 2017 rated it really liked it
"She expected to suffer. It was the nature of revenge"

I like anime and comics so I felt like I was reading a comic or anime, I like it. but it was a bit cheesy in some parts, just some parts I wish it didn't end like that, I know this is a serie but still it wasn't a good ending. I will read the second one as fast as I can.
Kari Buchheim
Dec 31, 2018 rated it liked it
Typical Teen novel feel, honestly, but had fun with the adventure. The twist on Japan folk lore and legend was really interesting to see. Rated it lower because the ending felt like something out of The Vampure Diaries or something similar.
Jenabah Kescoli
Sep 25, 2017 rated it liked it
This book was very interesting and it had a somewhat complex story but it was understandable.
May 19, 2018 rated it liked it
The book was good but started to die in book 2.
Sep 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing
a truly thrilling, suspenseful and engaging novel
Angela Christianson
Mar 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing
What's not to love? Sent in ancient Japan, ninjas and vampires equals great action! Surprisingly well written. And a lot of fun. I'll be ordering the second book in the series.
Andrew F.
Mar 07, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 3rd-9-weeks
Taro is a boy who lives in Japan with his mom and dad. His best friend Hiro lives right next to him. They live by the sea, so if you don't learn how to fish quickly, you die. That is what happened to Hiro's parents, who died from a shark attack while using terrible fishing strategies. Taro saved Hiro from the shark, and Hiro lives by them now. Taro comes home from a day of hunting. His dad is sick, like usual. And then, at night, the ninjas come. They decapitiate his dad, but then another ninja ...more
Jul 12, 2010 rated it liked it
“Taro had thought that the bloodsucking demons were only storybook things, meant to scare children into obedience, not real killers that could step out of the shadows and kill peasants only three ri from his home. He felt a shiver run down his spine, and a sense that danger had landed in Shirahama, as large and ponderous as a beached whale. Then he shook away the feeling. No, he was safe there, with his best friend, and there was no such thing as kyuuketsuki-not outside the old folktales, anywa ...more
Jul 06, 2011 rated it really liked it
General Summary: After his father is murdered and a ninja saves his life, Taro discovers the connection between ninjas and vampires and finds himself being dragged into a bitter conflict between the rival lords ruling Japan.

Edited to include: *MINOR SPOILERS AHEAD*

My Review:
I've shed tears for this book (July 11, 2011 9:43 AM)! It is one book in a long time that actually made me cry; tears spilled down rapidly as I try to control myself. *totally admires Shusaku* It is actually the death of Shu
Corinne Morier
Meh. DNFed at 25% (page 92) I just wasn't feeling it with this one.

Taro is our main character, yet I couldn't care less about him. I much preferred reading Hana's chapters, although they were shorter, and all in italics too (what a freaking headache). From the beginning, it's implied that Taro is some sort of special snowflake, but everyone keeps saying they don't know why he was chosen (except "the girl" in the prologue who we assume is Hana, who says that the ninja she's killing "had better b
Arin M.
Mar 11, 2015 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Online Eccentric Librarian
Jan 01, 2013 rated it did not like it

More reviews at the Online Eccentric Librarian

More reviews (and no fluff) on the blog

Keeping in mind that this is a YA book and therefore lacks the strong characterizations that would make the book more tedious to read for a younger audience - I still found the people to be paper thin. Upon finishing the last chapter, I had no idea in my head of what any of the characters look like, why they are motivated to do what they do, and honestly why I should be invested in them or care. The Japanese historica
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My name is Nick and I write and edit books for young adults. My first YA novel IN DARKNESS, was published by Bloomsbury in 2012 and won the Michael L Printz Award for Excellence in YA Literature. I also wrote a book called HOSTAGE THREE about a girl kidnapped by Somali pirates.

THERE WILL BE LIES is coming in January 15 and is about a girl who learns that everything she knows is a lie. To say it's

Other books in the series

Blood Ninja (3 books)
  • The Revenge of Lord Oda (Blood Ninja, #2)
  • The Betrayal of the Living (Blood Ninja, #3)

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