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Extended Audio Sample The Book of Five Rings Audiobook, by Miyamoto Musashi Click for printable size audiobook cover
4.31 out of 54.31 out of 54.31 out of 54.31 out of 54.31 out of 5 4.31 (32 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Miyamoto Musashi Narrator: Scott Brick Publisher: Tantor Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: June 2010 ISBN: 9781400188529
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Setting down his thoughts on swordplay, on winning, and on spirituality, legendary swordsman Miyamoto Musashi intended this modest work as a guide for his immediate disciples and future generations of samurai. He had little idea he was penning a masterpiece that would be eagerly devoured by people in all walks of life centuries after his death. Along with The Art of War by Sun Tzu, The Book of Five Rings has long been regarded as an invaluable treatise on the strategy of winning. Musashi's timeless advice on defeating an adversary, throwing an opponent off-guard, creating confusion, and other techniques for overpowering an assailant was addressed to the readers of earlier times on the battlefield and now serves the modern reader in the battle of life. In this new rendering by the translator of Hagakure and The Unfettered Mind, William Scott Wilson adheres rigorously to the seventeenth-century Japanese text and clarifies points of ambiguity in earlier translations. In addition, he offers an extensive introduction and a translation of Musashi's rarely published The Way of Walking Alone. Download and start listening now!

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Quotes & Awards

  • On Wall Street, when Musashi talks, people listen. Time

Listener Opinions

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Glen | 2/19/2014

    " Considered the classic treatise on samurai swordsmanship, this book does offer one a glimpse at the philosophy behind the use of the katana, which is rare, but it sadly lacks a manner by which to fully understand and visualize what Musashi is trying to explain to the reader. Certain words of wisdom can be easily understood, and applied to the modern battlefield and life in general, but much of what he says is too abstract to truly grasp in terms of application. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Ant | 2/11/2014

    " Practial guide to doing things properly. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Rodrigo | 1/21/2014

    " I should try to reread it I guess, I just don't get it "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Erik | 1/17/2014

    " Treat the sword language as a metaphor for debate, and this thing reveals a whole new dimension to the reader. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Huw Evans | 1/16/2014

    " This book has nothing to do with the Olympic movement. In fact it is so far removed from the spirit of DeCoubertin that the title becomes ironic. It is a book about killing people in the shortest posible time, in the most effective way without exposing oneself to too much risk of injury. It is the statement of a personal philosphy of warfare both on a personal level and in warfare. There is a Platonic element in which general theory is derived from a particular situation. It is not long but is hard hitting and almost brutal. It also is endowed with the spirit of Bushido that made the Samurai what they were. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Tyler Todd | 1/8/2014

    " Best book ever! My martial arts teacher recommended this to me because it not only teaches young samurai how to efficiently defeat an opponent; and gives important life skills for how to be successful in life. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Neil | 1/4/2014

    " A good book for strategy, but the principles can be applied in other areas besides warfare. Take some time and read this one, it can teach you some good lessons. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Stephen McDonough | 12/21/2013

    " Miyamoto Musashi is amazing. Ultimate Samurai, Insightful Writer, Amazing Artist. A True Japanese Renaissance Man. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Rembo666 | 11/23/2013

    " This is a book written by an accomplished samurai duelist. While it seems to be touted as a life philosophy book, I found it to be more of a fighting manual than anything else. There is no doubt that Miyamoto Musashi was a great warrior, but he's a second rate philosopher at best. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Eddie Harper jr | 10/29/2013

    " If you like The Art of War, you will love this book. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Dean | 10/10/2013

    " One of my favorites, bad ass, he was. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Gergely | 12/12/2012

    " Interesting, slightly confusing. Lots of "you have to study this well", does feel like there's more to discover. I heard people praising it over The Art of War, probably that one had a better editor, while I haven't made up my mind either way. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Deborah | 12/6/2012

    " I read this to do research on military strategy. The book was interesting from that respect and from a historical one, but even then a lot of what the book said seemed pretty obvious to me. It was worth reading for research, though, since I got some important tidbits from it. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jonas Ferreira | 11/16/2012

    " you need to be into samurais and japanese culture to understand it. But there is a reason why it is a classic. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Mehmet KirazoÄŸlu | 9/6/2012

    " I thought (actually expected) that it was a book telling about group strategy but it was full of repetitive arrogant boasts. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Rva | 6/1/2012

    " good book. The kind you keep reading over and over again. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jay | 5/31/2012

    " I think this will definitely help my fencing, because I'm feeling like I'm stuck at a plateau. I need to think of a fencing bout as life or death to get better, and this advice is right toward that. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jason | 3/30/2012

    " Reread this book pretty much every summer. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Luke Kanies | 1/26/2012

    " One of my favorite books of all time, and applicable to a lot of life but primarily a boom about personal combat, and preferably physical. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Mike | 12/17/2011

    " Miyamoto Musashi was the most famous swordsman in Japanese history, given the name kensei, sword saint. This is his book of strategy that he wrote living in a cave as an old man. It was a very popular business book in the west in the 80s. You might find it interesting. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Abraham | 12/4/2011

    " Japanese Classic. Guide to Ass-Kicking. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Ryan Brady | 12/4/2011

    " Read this while I was in the army. I really liked it as it has that Art of War feel as well as teaching you tactical aspects of war and battle. I dig it. Check it out. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 ThunderPhunk TheGreat | 11/19/2011

    " This book is generally discarded by most readers as only readable if you are becoming a swordsman or warrior, but it actually is full of valuable life lessons from a legendary man...I recommend it...blessings "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jay | 5/10/2011

    " I think this will definitely help my fencing, because I'm feeling like I'm stuck at a plateau. I need to think of a fencing bout as life or death to get better, and this advice is right toward that. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Michael | 4/30/2011

    " I read this and found it interesting as it is something I do have an interest in. The problem being is it isn't something I practice so a lot was lost on me. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Anwar | 4/9/2011

    " Very good strategy book, still reading it from time to time, "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jeff | 3/31/2011

    " Very insightful look into the mind of the samurai warriors! Although, being told "You should study this well" after every single lesson got somewhat annoying.

    Still a fascinating read.
    "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Lex | 3/6/2011

    " Martial Artist or not, this book will inspire you and impart some ancient wisdom into your life. Miyamoto Musashi was the epitome of legend. Read it for yourself if you haven't already. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Billy | 2/17/2011

    " the best example of unconventional thinking that i've ever seen. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Joshua | 1/21/2011

    " Ancient, esoteric? I liked it, but is it useful? hard to say, I got more out of the words and the structure of the book itself, than anything else. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Kerr | 1/11/2011

    " If you don't read anything else, read this. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Alec | 1/3/2011

    " Up to the water scroll so far - this is some stilted ass prose and poorly organized paragraphs like woah, but its fun. "

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About the Author
Author Miyamoto MusashiMiyamoto Musashi (1584-1645) was a renowned samurai warrior who, from age 13 to 30, fought and won over sixty duels. Between the ages of 30 and 50 he became known as a skilled craftsman and sculptor, as well as a calligrapher and a prolific painter. It was during this time that he formulated the ideas that later became A Book of Five Rings.
About the Narrator

Scott Brick, actor, narrator, and writer, attended UCLA and spent ten years in a traveling Shakespeare company. Passionate about the spoken word, he has narrated a wide variety of audiobooks, from thrillers and science fiction to classics and nonfiction. He has recorded more than eight hundred audiobooks and won over fifty AudioFile Earphones Awards and several of the prestigious Audie Awards. He was named a Golden Voice by AudioFile magazine and the Voice of Choice for 2016 by Booklist magazine.