Summary: A Wonderful Book
Comment: Turnbull does an excellent job of introducing the Sengoku Period (Warring States Period) of Japanese history. During this period, Japan was shattered into dozens of minor statelets. This period see the destruction of the shogunate, a long period of civil wars between the statelets, and the eventual reunification of Japan and the return of the shogunate under the Tokugawa. This period is of particular interest to fans of the samurai. This period is the last time in history in which samurai were the fierce warriors they are depicted to be. After this period, the samurai become glorified bureaucrats during the 250 years of peace during the Tokugawa shogunate. They only take up arms for a brief period during the fall of the shogunate, but it doesn't match anything that happened during the Sengoku Period.
This book is a fairly thin volume at only 96 pages. However, it is filled with lots of details and colorful illustrations. For samurai fans, this can serve as a great introduciton to the history of the greatest period of the samurai.