EAST WIND, RAIN by N. Richard Nash


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After Cry Macho (1975), this is ultramacho melodrama with strong coefficients of sex and violence--the scene being Pearl Harbor just when ""East Wind, Rain"" is a coded augury of the international weather ahead. Nash's novel, compounded with interest and lots of action, begins when the son of Johanna, the Admiral's young widow, is gelded and later takes his life. Johanna, a sensual, tough, indurated woman, is going to have her revenge and goes down into Japtown where Nishi, a man in a camera shop who perhaps knows too much, is found slit down the middle. While a seedy British stringer spy hangs around with his palm extended, Johanna continues her personal search for another Oriental, Tokan, whose wife had betrayed him with Johanna's son and who knows all about ""what we Japanese call the justice of bedbugs."" Tokan takes to the jungle while Tad, Johanna's son-in-law, also Navy, joins her on the stalk which proves two things: Johanna's desirability to Tad--she had always been his love/hate object; and her ultimate courage in Tokan's ritual seppuku which she completes--equal to the imperative of the knife. In spite of its excesses, the book has as many courses as a barbecue as well as an urgent, potent hook.

Pub Date: Feb. 7th, 1976
Publisher: Atheneum