• The Emperor's General

  • By: James Webb
  • Narrated by: David Dukes
  • Length: 6 hrs and 2 mins
  • 4.0 out of 5 stars (28 ratings)

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The Emperor's General

By: James Webb
Narrated by: David Dukes
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Publisher's Summary

Captain Jay Marsh had never questioned where his ultimate loyalty lay. He had witnessed the bloody horror left behind by the retreating Japanese army during World War II's final days. And he had abandoned his beautiful Filipina fiancée to see his duty through. 

But not even Marsh could guess the terrible personal price he would have to pay for his loyalty. He would follow General Douglas MacArthur to Tokyo itself. There he would become the brilliant, egocentric general's confidant, translator, surrogate son - and spy. 

Marsh would play a dangerous game of deliberate deceit and brutal injustice in the shadow world of postwar Japan's royal palaces and geisha houses, and recognize that the defeated emperor and his wily aides were exploiting MacArthur's ruthless ambition to become the American Caesar. 

The Emperor's General is a dramatic human story of the loss of innocence and the seduction of power, about the conflict between honor, duty, and love, all set against an extraordinary historical backdrop. 

©1999 James Webb (P)1999 Random House, Inc., Bantam Doubleday Dell Audio Publishing, A Division of Random House, Inc.

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What listeners say about The Emperor's General

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  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars

Boring and pathetic

James Webb wrote a great book - "Fields of Fire" - about the Vietnam war. The Emperor's General is pathetic. The author must have become bored with his subject halfway through the book, and then decided to try to end it gracefully. There were no engaging twists or dramatic turns, interesting dilemmas or real personal conflicts. Everything sounded contrived, as if this was the first manuscript by an aspiring writer. The narrator was horrible! He tries to impersonate a young Japanese girl by lisping softly and an aged Japanese general by simply lisping. I regret wasting my time listening to this.

7 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars

Too short for deep development

I liked the book. If you are looking for deep analysis of WW II or McArthur you are reading the wrong book. I checked the history and it is very accurate and I liked the frame story of a young officer. I didn't like the narrators Japanese accent but that is a minor disagreement. As I said in the title, I thought the characters, historical and fictional, could have used more developing.

5 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars

Gave up after about 1.5 hours

This is a love story from the author's personal life mixed with a biography of MacArthur. It did not work for me at all. At the 4th mention of his girlfriend's breasts (not necessarily a bad thing in some literary contexts), I shut it off.

5 people found this helpful