Kataki

Hank Searls, Author McGraw-Hill Companies $17.95 (345p) ISBN 978-0-07-056031-4
Searls (Overboard has come up with a good, slick mixture of fact and fiction. The descendants of 19th century American settlers on one of Japan's Bonin Islands are caught up in WW II. Though loyal to the emperor, they are suspect. When 12-year-old Matt Bancroft's mother is killed by a strafing American plane, he vows kataki (revenge). In the confusion of Japan's collapse, Matt assumes the identity of a dead son of missionaries and is ""repatriated'' to America. Forty years later, he is manipulated by a rabid Japanese secret society into thinking that Vice-President Bush was the ``murdering'' pilot. Infused with the samurai spirit of bushido, Matt concocts an almost foolproof assassination that will result in his own death. Most of the book is a long flashback, with brilliant scenes of Hiroshima and effective preaching against nuclear war. Few of the characters are deeply etched, but the book's pace and color are riveting. Searls knows his stuffespecially the atmosphere of wartime Japanand uses his material well. Major ad/promo. (September 21)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1987
Release date: 01/01/1987
Mass Market Paperbound - 978-0-425-11252-6
Paperback - 360 pages - 978-0-595-14447-1
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