Dec 20 2004
Harry Niles is a man on a mission, to get the last plane out of Japan before all hell breaks loose (aka the Pacific War begun with the sneak attack on Pearl Harbour).
The setting is Tokyo, December 6th, the eve of the attack on Pearl Harbour. Harry, having been born to Baptist Missionaries and grown up in Japan is at odds. On the one hand he speaks, eats and lives Japanese. He has a Japanese girlfriend and owns a little bar known as the “Happy Paris”. On the other hand though, Harry is completely gaijin (literally “not one of us”) and he knows that when war does break out he certainly does not want to be in Japan for it.
Smith takes great pains to really bring pre-Pacific War Japan to life, which, if you know a little about Japan, you will be pleasantly surprised to see the level of detail that is presented.
I loved December 6! I could hardly put it down, it is like a good popcorn movie (don’t think about plot feasibility, just enjoy it). If you know a little of Japan then this is a fine “Friday night by the fire” reader.
December 6 by Martin Cruz Smith