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Rain Fall (John Rain Book 1) by Barry Eisler
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Rain Fall (John Rain Book 1) (original 2002; edition 2003)

by Barry Eisler

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
982248,747 (3.8)31
Member:yrizaria
Title:Rain Fall (John Rain Book 1)
Authors:Barry Eisler
Info:Signet (2003), Edition: First, Mass Market Paperback, 384 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:****
Tags:crime

Work details

Rain fall by Barry Eisler (2002)

  1. 10
    Gone Tomorrow by Lee Child (BeckyJG)
    BeckyJG: John Rain is a hero who is similar in many ways to Jack Reacher. A man of action and of few words, deep, lonely (even if he doesn't realize it). Rain is perhaps more morally ambiguous than Reacher; both kill without hesitation and little remorse, but Rain is, after all, an assassin, and gets paid to do so.… (more)
  2. 00
    Lost Light by Michael Connelly (Jestak)
  3. 00
    Killing Floor by Lee Child (crazybatcow)
    crazybatcow: Lee Child's series starring Reacher starts with Killing Floor. If you like Rain's no-nonsense doing of whatever job it is that needs to be done, you'll probably like Child's series too.
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» See also 31 mentions

English (24)  Dutch (1)  All languages (25)
Showing 1-5 of 24 (next | show all)
good but not the best in this series ( )
  PaulRx04 | Apr 15, 2016 |
This book has a lot going for it. It really captures the atmosphere of Tokyo, as many other Japanophile reviewers have noted, with an exact recreation of time and place (the book was originally published as "Rain Fall" in 2003. It has well developed characters -- both the good guys and the baddies, though in some cases it's hard to tell the difference (that's particularly true of the central character. And it is powerfully suspenseful, keeping those pages turning and the reader glued to the plot. My only problem is the extraordinary level of violence, which is amped up not just by the plot but by the skill of the writer. Because the writing is so good, the violence feels much more graphic than is often the case. That's essentially a matter of taste, however -- the reviewer's problem, not the writer's --- and I will probably in any case forge ahead with the story. ( )
  annbury | Mar 15, 2016 |
Our favorite assassin in Tokyo gets caught in the middle of a political fight for supremacy and embroiled in a romance that threatens his livelihood. We love him because he's human and falls in love, and because he makes the mistakes that keep the plot moving. Greatly detailed, it makes you feel like you've visited Tokyo and hung out in its bars and restaurants. ( )
  dbsovereign | Jan 26, 2016 |
A pretty good mystery & thriller, although there's a bit too much angst for me. Reminds me of [a:David Morrell|12535|David Morrell|http://photo.goodreads.com/authors/1218135781p2/12535.jpg]'s characters a lot in that way. Good, but not inhumanely so. Rain gets his ass handed to him occasionally & there's nothing magical about his situations or solutions. Good logic. There weren't any of the huge plot holes that so often accompany books of this sort. Also, it's the start of a pretty good series. I actually read the 3d book first & didn't have any trouble going back to this one or enjoying that one. ( )
  jimmaclachlan | Aug 18, 2014 |
WELL DESCRIBED AND ABOVE AVERAGE SPY NOVEL:
MORE LIKE ***1/2, but bumped up due to Mr. Eisler's research (or "experiences" as it may be).

I'm a huge Ian Fleming fan, and have read all of the Bond novels, but found some passages very dated (overall they are DEFINITELY classics, though). This led me to seek out a current-gen spy writer and check out what I may find. Since I worked at a large chain bookseller, I had the opportunity to explore the store and came across the John Rain series by Mr. Eisler.

Rain Fall is about a half-Japanese / half-American spy named John Rain who cut his teeth while serving in Vietnam. After he left the armed forces, he ended up in Japan as a hitman-for-hire. He was not just a man killing marks out in the open, or one that left behind forensic evidence, Rain could kill and make it APPEAR like an accident.

The story is a good one (no spoilers here), but one that is nothing new. There are twists and turns, and many characters who we THINK are in cahoots with "the bad guys" (ironic considering Rain is also a killer), and they may or may not be.

The main characters are Rains cohort Harry, a hot jazz pianist Midori (who is on the cusp of superstardom), his Nam buddy "Crazy Jake", local Japanese agent Tatsu, Forbes reporter Franklin Bulfinch, past acquaintance Bill Holtzer, possible enemy Toshi Yamaoto, and others.

He does a good job of filling out these characters considering the novel's only 366 pages. I'm happy it's only this long, because it makes for a quick read, and I found the middle of the book a little slow.

I really enjoyed the setting of the novel, as Mr. Eisler does a great job of describing the murky streets of Japan, as well as the smoky interiors. I'm a huge music fan as well (more rock than jazz), and found the story of Midori one that kept my attention.

Of course, the main character Rain has been filled out well, too. Maybe too well...I wonder what I'll learn about him in future books, and thought that maybe Mr. Eisler should have kept some of his past for future novels.

Overall, this is a quick read, and easy to understand. If I had to describe this book to someone I would say it's kind of like the movies 'The Specialist' 'The Spy Who Loved Me' 'Lethal Weapon'. All good movies, I would say.

Minor spoiler thought: At the beginning of the novel, we see how Rain is the consummate professional by his thoughts and hitman protocol, so why would he make so many dumb decisions pertaining to Midori???
  lonepalm | Feb 5, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 24 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (13 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Barry Eislerprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Nishii, BrianNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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This novel is for three people who are not here to read it.

For my father, Edgar, who gave me strength.
For my mother, Barbara, who gave me insight.
For my brother, Ian, who helped me climb the mountain,
whose memory keeps me climbing still.
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Harry cut through the morning rush-hour crowd like a shark fin through water.
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First John Rain story.
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 045120915X, Mass Market Paperback)

John Rain, a Japanese American konketsu, or half-breed, learned his lethal trade as a member of the U.S. Special Forces. Although tortured by memories of atrocities he committed in Vietnam, he has become a paid assassin, a solitary man who lives in the shadows and trusts no one, even those who pay extraordinary sums for his ability to make murder look like natural death. But the aftermath of an otherwise routine hit on a government bureaucrat brings Rain to the attention of two men he knows from the old days in Vietnam: a friend who's now a Tokyo cop and an enemy who betrayed Rain long ago and is now the CIA's station chief in Japan. Like the gangster who hired Rain to kill Yasuhiro Kawamura, they want something the dead man had--a computer disk containing proof of high-level corruption, information that could destroy Japan's ruling political coalition. The search for the disk leads them to a woman Rain has come to love, a talented young jazz musician who also happens to be Kawamura's daughter. In this taut, brilliantly paced debut thriller, set in a vividly rendered Tokyo, the author manages an unlikely feat; he earns the reader's sympathy and concern for his protagonist, an amoral assassin who is one of most compelling characters in recent crime fiction. --Jane Adams

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:20:44 -0400)

(see all 4 descriptions)

Half American, half Japanese, John Rain is based in Tokyo -- where he kills people for a living. But he won't kill just anyone. And never a woman. Rain may not be a good man, but he's good at what he does -- until he falls for the beautiful daughter of his last kill.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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