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Nicholai Hel, born in the ravages of World War I China to an aristocratic Russian mother and a mysterious German father, raised in the spiritual gardens of a Japanese Go Master, survives the destruction of Hiroshima to emerge as the worlds most artful loverand its most accomplished and highly paid assassin. Genius, mystic, master of language and culture, Hels secret is his determination to attain a rare kind of personal excellence, a state of effortless perfectionShibumi.
Now living in an isolated mountain fortress with his magnificent Eurasian mistressHel faces his most sinister enemy, a supermonolith of espionage and monopoly. The battle lines are drawn: ruthless power and corruption on one side and on the other, Shibumi.