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Book Rating (11)

Narrator Rating (3)


Unabridged Audiobook

Written By: Trevanian

Narrated By: Joe Barrett

Date: June 2005

Duration: 16 hours 48 minutes


Nicholai Hel, born in the ravages of World War I China to an aristocratic Russian mother and a mysterious German father, and raised in the spiritual gardens of a Japanese Go master, survives the destruction of Hiroshima to emerge as the world’s most artful lover and its most accomplished and highly paid assassin. Genius, mystic, master of language and culture, Hel’s secret is his determination to attain a rare kind of personal excellence, a state of effortless perfection—shibumi.

Now living in an isolated mountain fortress with his magnificent Eurasian mistress, Hel faces his most sinister enemy, a super-monolith of espionage and monopoly. The battle lines are drawn: ruthless power and corruption on one side, and on the other, shibumi.


  • Joseph Gull

    One of the single best books ever written, and brilliantly narrated in this audiobook edition. Trevanian has truly created a masterpiece.

  • Ms. Malaprop

    I couldn't get past disc 2. The narrator was one of the top ten worst. First, he gave the Arab in the screening room a German accent. Secondly, the author described the First Assistant to the majordomo, whose name I've already forgotten, as a computer whiz-genius and the narrator turned him into a simpering dolt. Thirdly, the secretary to a man of this stature -- a CIA r chief of the highest order who has an office 16 floors underground (?) -- is portrayed as completely silly by the author, and read by the narrator with a tiny, frightened, and shaky voice, undermining the entire introduction to the Big Man. I popped the disc out after listening to 15 painful minutes of un-funny Basque conversation ending in a haggle over a 2 franc cup of coffee (the agent in question "forgot" to convert her money while in Europe????). Altogether unconvincing.


by Trevanian

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Shibumi, Trevanian
Shibumi, Trevanian
This title is due for release on June 27, 2005.

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Shibumi, Trevanian
This title is due for release on June 27, 2005
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