” Silence ” by Shusuke Endo is a historical fiction story originally published in the 1960’s .
It’s 17th century Japan , Christianity is banned , and any caught worshipping are interrogated and tortured until they publicly renounce their faith . Two Portuguese Jesuit priests are sent to Japan to secretly help preserve the Japanese Christian faith and also to investigate the claim that one of their mentors has apostatized . Eventually both priests are captured and are forced to watch the Japanese torture believers unless they both abandon their faith publicly .
This story is told in the form of letters from one of the Jesuit’s which helps make it feel authentic … also there is the fact that in 17th century Japan Christians really were captured and tortured giving another layer of authenticity here . Intense is the word that comes to mind . The story deals with issues of cultural differences , pride , cowardice , persecution and faith . I should point out that the methods of torture are described in the story so this may prove too intense for some of you . This story was later turned into a movie by Martin Scorsese and it’s a good adaptation . Overall , I would recommend both the book and the movie .
Rate : Legacy read
Just wanted to give everyone a quick update on the blog and such . I have not been posting reviews as of late because I needed more time to think them through . I’ll be putting them up within the next few weeks and when you see what books I’ve been tackling you’ll understand the delay … or maybe not .
I’m looking to make longer reviews while avoiding spoilers and that as turned out to be complicated but it’ll be worth it in the end . Also looking to set up an actual rating system to put into the reviews and I think I’ve got a good , simple one , now that gets straight to the point . As a disclaimer , I’ll add that these reviews are my opinion and they may not reflect on how you would feel reading said stories . But here is the rating system from worst to best .
Forget about it : A story that is so bad , you might as well just forget it . Will probably not be used that much as I tend to avoid reading books I don’t think will interest me .
Library read : A book that has some interesting stuff in it but I would not spend money on it .
Discount bin : A good book that has some flaws here and there that can be ignored for a decent price .
Legendary work : A near perfect book and/or a book with a legacy that makes up for any of it’s flaws .
Think that is self-explanatory enough . Also , if things work out , I will actually set up a schedule on this website of when the reviews will be out . It almost sounds professional ! Anyways , I appreciate all who take the time to read this and hope to have the reviews up soon . Have a nice day .
” The Godfather ” by Mario Puzo is a crime epic novel originally published in the late 1960’s .
The novel opens up with a false trial dealing with sexual assault . The father of the girl who was assaulted promises to go to the local crime Don , Vito Corleone , to get justice . A washed up singer loses control of his marriage and decides he needs the advice of his godfather to get his life back together . These two men and more decide to go to the wedding of Don Corleone’s daughter to ask their favors because apparently a Sicillian cannot say no on their daughter’s wedding day . Favor after favor is granted by the wise Don and everything seems to go fine up until The Don takes his eldest son ( Sonny ) with him to a meeting with a representative of another crime family in New York . The rival family wants to work out a deal involving political protection for their drug deals , Vito turns the deal down but Sonny shows some opposition to his fathers position . Sonny’s outburst leads to Vito and the middle brother (Freddie ) being shot . Vito survives but is unable to continue as the Don , so Sonny takes over and convinces the youngest brother ( Michael ) to join him . Michael eventually assassinated the man whom ordered the hit on his father and this sets off a war between all five of the main mafia families in New York . Believe it or not , this is still pretty much the beginning of the novel .
Just a fair warning , this novel is indeed very graphic and violent . That probably goes without saying for a crime novel but felt it should be said anyways . Let me say that this is a true epic tragedy with a 50’s and 60’s mafia backdrop . It is like a more modern Shakespeare play . Mario Puzo is truly a great character writer , we feel intimate with every important ( and some of the minor ) characters in this story . He takes some breaks from the main story to tell other short stories about each characters past and it helps make this a deeper story than your typical mafia exploitation type novel . Overall , I’d highly recommend it to any crime novel enthusiast as well as tragedy/drama fans . Hell , I’d even pay full price and I don’t pay full price for anything .