Review: Japanese Castles AD 250-1540, Stephen Turnbull

I did very much enjoy this introduction to Japanese fortifications for the time period mentioned by Mr Turnbull. But as with nearly any Osprey book I read, I am also rather glad that at least this time extra information is within reach. Indeed, I have the very same Stephen Turnbull’s longer (and hopefully, thereby, more thorough) ‘Strongholds of the Samurai’ on my bookshelf waiting to be picked up and read.

Now, I said “more thorough” which is actually being a bit harsh towards the author. For the length of this book (at approximately 64 pages), the amount of valuable information that was in it is truly staggering. So, for what it is meant to be, we get a truly worth-the-money introduction as I very much expected this to be. Plus, the drawings! Always been one of the greater aspects of Osprey books, the level of drawings presented to us is quite good now as ever. [The sentence admittedly has a very odd syntax, but I blame that for being awake at the ungodly hour of half one AM.]

Also, it is quite noteworthy that there is a reasonable amount of first hand accounts included, especially considering that while it is something I have noticed in Osprey books, it does still take a bit of skill and thinking if we are to find good and fitting quotes into a book that has to be heavy on the content without wasting space. I guess that this allowed me to appreciate Mr Turnbull more, for he presented us with the fine humorous scene (while still technically describing a progress of a siege) as follows:

“The men in the towers beckoned to Yoriyoshi’s men, calling ‘Are you warriors’, and several dozen servant girls climbed up to the towers to sing songs. Yoriyoshi was much displeased.”

All in all, I am not displeased at all. =)

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