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Hard Rain [Mass Market Paperback]

Barry Eisler
4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (45 customer reviews)
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Book Description

July 5 2004 John Rain Thrillers

In his critically acclaimed Rain Fall, Barry Eisler introduced half Japanese-half American freelance hit man John Rain, a "dashing and dangerous hero...as likable as he is lethal." Now Eisler's back. So is Rain, the master of death by "natural causes" whose new target threatens the fragile political balance of an entire country.

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Hard Rain + Rain Storm + Rain Fall
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Product Description

From Amazon

Barry Eisler's half-breed freelance assassin John Rain returns to Tokyo for a second outing in Hard Rain, the sequel to Eisler's stunning 2002 debut, Rain Fall. Once again Rain is working with, or at least parallel to, Tatsu, a wily veteran of Japan's FBI equivalent, who aims to cleanse the Japanese government of its systemic corruption. To further this goal, he's persuaded the ever-cautious Rain to take out Murakami, a brutal gangster and hitman who specializes in making his killings look like suicide, a specialty Rain thought was his alone. Liquidating the dangerous and elusive Murakami proves to be a difficult task, however, one that leads to personal loss for Rain, and sets the plot on course for a climax that hits with the power of a well-delivered roundhouse kick.

Eisler builds on Rain's self-enforced isolation and loneliness as he expertly shows the reader Tokyo as channeled by Chandler, transforming the burgeoning metropolis into a noir catacomb of dimly lit hostess bars, scheming bureaucrats, shadowy intelligence agents, and outlaw martial arts dojos where thugged-up yakuza train for illicit death matches.

While the plot becomes complicated toward the novel's conclusion, Rain is a refreshing and complex character whom readers will want to see return for another installment. If you've a yen for a thriller that mixes suspense, intrigue, and action with a Japanese flavor and a hardboiled American attitude, Eisler's Hard Rain is an excellent choice. --Benjamin Reese --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Publishers Weekly

Rain Fall (2002), Eisler's first book about Japanese-American Vietnam vet John Rain, a hired assassin for government agencies in Tokyo and Washington, worked so well that the author wisely decided to keep all the elements intact in this captivating follow-up. Once again, the nightscape of Tokyo is painted in beautifully dark tones, scored to the live jazz of the clubs where Rain drinks from a menu of expensive single malt whiskeys. Once again, Rain knows everything about the arts of killing and avoiding surveillance-from the sound a man's ribs make when he's crushed to death trying to lift too much weight to how to use a container of very hot tea to ruin a would-be pursuer's day. Once again Rain has to decide whether any of the people he's working for-the shrewd Tatsu, a veteran agent of Japan's FBI who seems to be dedicated to battling high-level corruption; various shady American CIA agents-are to be trusted. And once again, Rain realizes how alone he really is, despite the promise of love and companionship from a couple of very interesting women. "I had understood even as a child that to be half Japanese is to be half something else, and to be half something else is to be... chigatte. Chigatte, meaning `different,' but equally meaning `wrong.' The language, like the culture, makes no distinction." The plot itself is a complicated one about a CIA scheme called Crepuscular, designed to clean up-or possibly further corrupt-Japan's tangled mess of business and politics. Eisler acknowledges the help of experts in many areas, but it's his own impressive literary skills that make his John Rain such a fascinating, touching and wholly believable character.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
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ONCE YOU GET past the overall irony of the situation, you realize that killing a guy in the middle of his own health club has a lot to recommend it. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5 stars
4.9 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars interesting hero Feb. 25 2012
Format:Mass Market Paperback
hard rain is my first introduction to john rain and it isn,t bad. he is a killer who makes people,s deaths look natural. he has a code about his choices. no women, no children, and there must be significant reason for the death. he is trying to get out of this life but his former boss wants him to do one more job for him. my only problem is not knowing much about chinese culture i didn,t understand the bars or some of the language that was used but that,s just a small issue. otherwise it was an intelligent and worthwhile read and i,ll check out his other rain books.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Eisler is a fantastic writer... July 15 2004
This novel is not quite as strong as Rain Fall was, but the story is a good one. The stakes are high, but the payoff is a bit smaller. We will be fighting Yamaoto for another day. Still, Rain is a fantastic character and Eisler an oustanding writer. He is much better writer than many of fellow authors in this genre. This story lacks a bit of the depth and context of the first, but remains fascinating in descriptions and Japanese politics. Will Rain ever find peace? Must read the next to find out!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Give me more RAIN books ASAP! April 26 2004
This one is impossible to put down! You will read it until the end and then wish there were more works by this author to put your hands on. This is absolutely spellbinding, it grips your gut, occupies your mind, and takes your breath away. Once it was finished, I had to catch my breath and brake the ticker, but I could not stop the gray matter synapses. I'm not entirely sure, but I guess that's what a superb thriller is supposed to do.
I am an avid reader and can assure you that it's not too often that I come across a book like this one. Can't wait for the next book in this series. Sign me up for it, I'm hooked!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Hard Rain by Barry Eisler April 5 2004
Hard Rain was an exciting and thrilling book which bested his debut book Rain Fall.
I was captivated by the storyline and was taken through a wild and adventureous journey as if I was right their with John Rain.
Hard Rain is an exciting book with everything in it: drama, tension, excitment and more. I recommend this book to anyone interested in these senses. Barry Eisler did an excellent job in Hard Rain and I can't wait for his next book to come out "Rain Storm."
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5.0 out of 5 stars Eisler Rocks! Sept. 6 2007
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Boy,can this guy create a cool character! I liked his first book better,this one is a bit darker and slower, yet can't wait for more!

Most reviews here are raving - and they are ALL RIGHT! Barry Eisler can surely write circles around most bestsellers today.

Keep them coming Barry!
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5.0 out of 5 stars The character stays with you... Feb. 18 2004
By A Customer
Like a good glass of wine, the character John Rain stayed with me after I finished the audiobook. Rain is an assassin with ethics and a highly developed sense of paranoia who specializes in natural-seeming kills and hand-to-hand engagements, and who seems to live only in hotels. The fight/kill scenes are exciting and intensely cinematic, and also seem very authentic. The Tokyo portrait is graphically, contextually beautiful. But what really intrigues me is the conflict between Rain's need for isolation that keeps him safe in a highly dangerous environment and the way he is drawn into emotionally connecting relationships that could kill him or his friends/lovers. I will definitely read Rain Fall (I wish it were out in audio) and look forward to the next sequel. I want to see how Eisler treats Rain's aging (Vietnam era) and future relationships. And hopefully there will be an equally strong female character who challenges him out of the safety zone of isolation for more than the length of a (well-written) sexual encounter.
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By A Customer
In most series, the first book in the series is the best. Not so here. Eisler delivers in Hard Rain a fantastic followup to his first book, Rain Fall! Not only does it continue the engaging John storyline, but Hard Rain stands on its own as a great story in its own right.
As always, Eisler captures a view of Tokyo that is unique. He draws us in to a Tokyo that few residents, much less visitors, fully experience. Having lived in there for a few years, and having some familiarity with the, shall we say, less than polite parts of Tokyo, I can attest that Eisler's portrayal is dead on.
I look forward to continuing to follow Rain's life and adventures.
My only question is, when will we see these characters on the big screen as well???
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5.0 out of 5 stars Deeper and More complex than the original... Sept. 24 2003
Rain Fall ended with several loose ends around, "But if X and Y happened, wouldn't Z happen too?" There were several character holes, and a few logical consequences that needed to be followed.
Would the bad guys really believe John Rain's fake death? What would happen to Midori? Wasn't Harry traceable?
The book opens up more of John Rain's character, showing both his strenghts and some more obvious weaknesses. (Why can't spies like him not shag every girl they meet?) It also closes several loose ends hanging over from previous books. We learn more about John Rain's ruthlessness, as well as which rules he's willing to bend, and which not.
The plot gets complex near the end. You're left with enough "But what about this?" items to guarantee another episode. (At least I hope so!) If there's one downside of the book, perhaps a few of the supporting charachters (particularly in the CIA) were not as believable as I'd expect.
The equisite writing of Tokyo life continues to capture the reader. It'll introduce you in a very realistic way to one of the world's great cities. If you've been there, this should bring back some great memories.
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