- ISBN 0 7206 0354 4
- £50.00 (Postage free)
TRANSLATED FROM THE JAPANESE BY WILLIAM JOHNSTON
First British Commonwealth edition, 1976
This edition is in very good condition. There is evidence of slight yellowing on and around the spine, as well as a small, barely noticeble ink mark on the front. Otherwise, the dust jacket is pristine with no blemishes. With the exception of the tips of a few central pages, which have been dog-eared, the book itself has been beautifully preserved, with no signs of marking or discolouring.
Silence, which became a centre of controversy on publication in Japan in 1967, is widely regarded as Endo's most important work. The novel describes the attempt by foreign missionaries to convert seventeenth-century Japan to Christianity, in the face of relentless persecution by the authorities. Under torture, the missionaries apostasize -- defeated, Endo suggests, not by man but by 'this swamp of Japan'. His theme has a universal relevance. For, in the opinion of many, the Hellenistic Christianity which Endo shows to be so unsuitable for Japan is equally unsuitable for the modern West; and if the notions of God, sin and death have to be rethought for Japan, so they will have to be for the modern West.
Graham Greene has described Silence as 'In my opinion one of the finest novels of our time', and Francis King, in the Sunday Telegraph, wrote that the book has 'made it clear that here was a writer of towering talent'.