Rob's Reviews > Shogun: A Novel of Japan

Shogun by James Clavell
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bookshelves: 2009
Recommended for: my liege Lord

So sorry, I am not worthy of the honor of reviewing this novel. If however, my Lord insists it, then I shall endeavor to offer up some humble thoughts regarding its mighty, even epic narrative. Neh? The scope is so vast, the characters and settings are so many, the head is liable to spin at times, so sorry. But the arc it follows is like a peregrine's path through the sky: long but fast and with vicious twists along what might otherwise have seemed a predictable path. I'm sure my Lord would agree that parts of the story can become quite tedious. I am not speaking of the slow-to-develop romance between Mariko and the Anjin-san nor even of the dueling political machinations of Toranaga and Ishido. No, Sire. This humble vassal speaks more to the text and how Japanese is interwoven with the barbarian words in so many places. And then how barbarian words come even to replace Japanese! Or barbarian words standing in for the words of other barbarian tongues! If you'll excuse this vassal's petulant tongue, Sire, it's enough to make one fart dust, so sorry. But these tedious affectations do blend in after a while, neh? and the narrative is quite the enjoyable one — full of so much intrigue and humor. A rousing and enjoyable tale of which I am not worthy to comment further. Please, I cannot live with this shame. Please allow me to commit seppuku at once.
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Quotes Rob Liked

James Clavell
“Horses are far worse than men for treachery...”
James Clavell, Shōgun

Reading Progress

December 25, 2007 – Shelved
March 7, 2009 –
page 25
March 8, 2009 –
page 119
14.73% "gripping"
March 8, 2009 –
page 173
March 10, 2009 –
page 198
March 17, 2009 –
page 284
March 18, 2009 –
page 354
43.81% "Hiro-matsu is one bad-ass m**********r."
March 24, 2009 –
page 420
March 25, 2009 –
page 451
March 27, 2009 –
page 540
March 29, 2009 –
page 570
March 30, 2009 –
page 610
March 30, 2009 –
page 660
81.68% "I actually kinda hate how Clavelle indicates that his characters have lapsed into Latin by using "thou art""
April 1, 2009 –
page 728
April 3, 2009 –
page 791
97.9% "I go back/forth re: whether this book is a fun read or a forced death march"
April 5, 2009 –
page 833
April 5, 2009 –
page 936
April 6, 2009 –
0.0% "Onward to "Book Five" (but damn am I ready for this high drama to come to its conclusion)"
April 7, 2009 –
page 1050
100% "I'd really like to wrap this one up this week and move on, so sorry."
April 7, 2009 –
page 1127
Started Reading
April 8, 2009 – Shelved as: 2009
April 8, 2009 – Finished Reading

Comments Showing 1-48 of 48 (48 new)

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message 1: by Jessie (new) - added it

Jessie Lol your review made me laugh so much. On page 293 of Shogun and already feel like committing seppuku, neh? Lol, thanks for making me smile x

message 2: by Rob (new) - rated it 3 stars

Rob Jessie wrote: "Lol, thanks for making me smile x"

You're quite welcome. :-)

Mary JL Your point of view for this review was a really nice change from the usual reviewing style. Nicely done.

message 4: by Ben (new) - rated it 5 stars

Ben So sorry, I must disagree. Please excuse me, but I think the switch of tongues is very most suitable to convey the shifting perspective.

message 5: by Ben (new) - rated it 5 stars

Ben So sorry, I forgot to thank you for your excellent review. The shame is immense. I ask that you will honour me by being my second.

message 6: by Rob (new) - rated it 3 stars

Rob Ben wrote: "So sorry, I forgot to thank you for your excellent review. The shame is immense. I ask that you will honour me by being my second."

It would be my most humble privilege to honor you as such.

(Also: HA!)

Ethan Your review was hilarious. You were right on. I loved the book and gave it 5 stars, however. But you make a point. I looked past those things and judged it on how I felt transported back in time when I read it.

message 8: by Rob (new) - rated it 3 stars

Rob Thanks for the comments, Ethan!

message 9: by Muyiwa (new) - added it

Muyiwa Olumilua Rob, you are indeed a clown! Jokes apart, you can't take it away from the book, it teleports you back in time and places you smack on the scene of all the events in the story. It is one of the best novels I've read, and I have read quite a few.
I have to say your review is a refreshing departure from the stereotypical reviews I read, and it gave me a good laugh!
Lest I forget, you are allowed to commit seppuku!

Andrew watakushi mada yomimashita neh? mecha omoshirokute kakoi desu ga, tokidoki tsumaranai neh? I also hated the switches to Latin and reading "neh" in spoken barbarian language and thoughts.

Heber Wonderful review!

message 12: by Ben (new) - rated it 5 stars

Ben Pashkoff WHY only 3 stars?

Phillip Neumann Indeed, why only three stars? Explain yourself. Your criticisms amount to a maximum reduction of I would say, half a star.

Sunnyss Haha awesome review!!

Amanda This is the best. My thoughts exactly!

Jared Best. Review. Ever.

message 17: by Sayuri (new) - added it

Sayuri Nitta This review made me laugh! You're awesome!

Molly Ringle That was awesome. I touch my forehead to the ground before you, Sire.

Karan HAHAHA! Man, you had me laughing well.

Kayode James I probably enjoyed this review more than most because I automatically read it (and some of the comments) in one of the voices of David Case, the audiobook's narrator.

message 21: by Dusty (new) - added it

Dusty Bookworm Excellent review.

Elizabeth wow you captured that flawlessly!!!!!

Kathleen Your review was hilarious

Carole P. Roman Very creative. Great review.

Marianne I love Shogun but I think I might love your review slightly more

Marianne I love Shogun but I think I might love your review slightly more

message 27: by Beverly (new) - added it

Beverly Low Hahaha I am new to goodreads and this is why I keep checking it every day!!! Hilarious review and awesome comments!!! I watched this many years ago and loved it...but I don't know, I think I might pass, hahaha Thanks so much!!!

message 28: by Beverly (new) - added it

Beverly Low Ok,OK I got it...25percent in but had to take a break! First time ever..neh?

message 29: by Persis (new)

Persis Shah This is by far the best and most wittiest book review in goodreads !

Frank Domo, Rob-sama

message 31: by Nick (new) - rated it 5 stars

Nick Degani "Neh" lol yeah that thing was killing me

Wickedfella this is awesome and pretty accurate

Kitty Haha! So sorry.

Keeley Ok, that was awesome. And accurate. Very entertaining and informative review. :)

yaa nti I aso found it quite tedious in most places but what a wealth of exotic tradition! Best review ever, Rob!

Libby Smith Perfect review! Love it :)

Felix Wonderful!!

message 38: by John (new) - rated it 4 stars

John You are a most unworthy vassal for giving only 3 stars. You are forbidden from committing seppuku. You are a dung heap unworthy of even farting dust. I order you to be buried with you feet firmly in the earth up to your neck near an ant hill with honey over your head.

message 39: by Adam (new) - rated it 4 stars

Adam Ellison Haha great review.

Marcos My thoughts exactly... but, of course, much more brilliantly written...

Ginny Excellent review, I am unworthy to read, but only 3stars?

Ateet Very very funny review! Loved the review and the book too.

Veronica S I’m dying.

message 44: by Jan (new) - added it

Jan Reading reviews of a review. Get back to the book! Have any of you watched the TV series? Appreciate the humour but . . . 😨

message 45: by Paul (new) - rated it 4 stars

Paul Boden This review made me so happy

Gustavo Great review, just finished the book and cant stop laughing!!

Farhanul Nawaz Thou

message 48: by Jhon (new) - rated it 5 stars

Jhon Sigata ganai, I still love this book very much. Karma neh? I'm impressed with the author's knowledge and research about Japanese culture, it's way of thinking, history at that time. Beside being entertaining, it given me knowledges

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