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Barry Eisler is an American award-winning, New York Times bestselling author of mystery, thriller and crime fiction books.

The holder of a black belt at the Kodokan Judo Institute in Japan, Eisler spent three years in a covert role with the Directorate of Operations of the CIA, presently called the National Clandestine Service.

He also worked as a technology lawyer and startup executive in Silicon Valley and Japan.

Eisler attributes his writing inspiration to the experiences he had in agency training, law, in Japan, and his background in martial arts–which all provide a nice concoction for his works.

His books have been translated into 20 languages, selling multiple copies around the world.

Eisler currently resides in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Whenever he isn't writing novels, Eisler can be found blogging about national security and the media.

More about Barry Eisler

Genres: Mystery, Thriller

Born: 1964

United States

Website: https://www.barryeisler.com/

Non Series

  • The God's Eye View (2016)

Ben Treven

  1. Fault Line (2009)
  2. Inside Out (2010)

Dox

  1. Amok (2022)

John Rain

  1. A Clean Kill in Tokyo (2002)
  2. A Lonely Resurrection (2003)
  3. Winner Take All (2004)
  4. Redemption Games (2005)
  5. Extremis (2006)
  6. The Killer Ascendant (2007)
  7. Paris Is A Bitch: A John Rain Novella (2011)
  8. The Detachment (2011)
  9. Graveyard of Memories (2014)
  10. Zero Sum (2017)
  11. The Killer Collective (2019)
  12. The Chaos Kind (2021)

Livia Lone

  1. Livia Lone (2016)
  2. The Night Trade (2018)
  3. All the Devils (2019)

Non-fiction

  1. The Ass Is A Poor Receptacle For The Head (2011)

Novellas

  1. The Lost Coast (2011)
  2. The Khmer Kill (2012)
  3. London Twist (2013)
Dox

Detailed book overview

Non Series

The God's Eye View

Knowledge is power…and they know everything.

NSA director Theodore Anders has a simple goal: collect every phone call, email, and keystroke tapped on the Internet. He knows unlimited surveillance is the only way to keep America safe.

Evelyn Gallagher doesn’t care much about any of that. She just wants to keep her head down and manage the NSA’s camera network and facial recognition program so she can afford private school for her deaf son, Dash.

But when Evelyn discovers the existence of an NSA program code-named God’s Eye, and connects it with the mysterious deaths of a string of journalists and whistle-blowers, her doubts put her and Dash in the crosshairs of a pair of government assassins: Delgado, a sadistic bomb maker and hacker; and Manus, a damaged giant of a man who until now has cared for nothing beyond protecting the director.

Within an elaborate game of political blackmail, terrorist provocations, and White House scheming, a global war is being fought―a war between those desperate to keep the state’s darkest secrets and those intent on revealing them. A war that Evelyn will need all her espionage training and savvy to survive. A war in which the director has the ultimate informational advantage: The God’s Eye View.

Author: Barry Eisler
First Release: 2016
ISBN: 978-1503949614
Publisher: Thomas & Mercer

Ben Treven

Fault Line

In Silicon Valley, the eccentric inventor of a new encryption application is murdered in an apparent drug deal.

In Istanbul, a cynical undercover operator receives a frantic call from his estranged brother, a patent lawyer who believes he is the next victim.

And on the sun-drenched slopes of Sand Hill Road, Silicon Valley’s nerve center of money and technology, old family hurts sting anew as two brothers who share nothing but blood and bitterness wage a desperate battle against a faceless enemy.

Alex Treven has sacrificed everything to achieve his sole ambition: making partner in his high-tech law firm. But then the inventor of a technology Alex is banking on is murdered…and the patent examiner who reviewed it dies…and Alex himself narrowly escapes an attack in his own home. Off balance, out of ideas, and running out of time, he knows the one person who can help him is the last person he’d ever ask: his brother.

Ben Treven is a Military Liaison Element, an elite undercover soldier paid to “find, fix, and finish” high-value targets in America’s Global War on Terror. Disenchanted with what he sees as America’s culture of denial and decadence, Ben lives his detached life in the shadows because the black ops world is all he really knows—and because other than Alex, who he hasn’t spoken to since their mother died, his family is long gone.

But blood is thicker than water, and when he receives Alex’s frantic call, Ben hurries to San Francisco to help him. Only then does Alex reveal that there’s another player who knows of the technology: Sarah Hosseini, a young Iranian American lawyer who Alex has long secretly desired… and who Ben immediately distrusts.

As these three radically different people struggle to identify the forces attempting to silence them, Ben and Alex are forced to examine the events that drove them apart—even as Sarah’s presence, and her own secret wants, deepens the fault line between them.

Author: Barry Eisler
First Release: 2009
ISBN: 978-1481205252
Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
Inside Out

Torture. Ghost Detainees. And a massive cover-up that continues even today.

Marooned in a Manila jail after a bar fight fatality, black ops soldier Ben Treven gets a visit from his former commander, Colonel Scott Horton, who explains the price of Ben’s release: find and eliminate Daniel Larison, a rogue operator from Ben’s unit who has stolen ninety-two torture tapes from the CIA and is using them to blackmail the U.S. government.

But other players are after the tapes, too, and to find Larison, Ben will have to survive CIA hit teams, Blackwater mercenaries, and the long reach of the White House. He’ll also have to find a way to handle Paula Lanier, a smart, sexy FBI agent who has her own reasons for wanting the tapes and is determined to get them before Ben does.

With the stakes this high, everyone has an angle—everyone but Ben, who will have to find the right alliance if he wants to stay alive.

Author: Barry Eisler
First Release: 2010
ISBN: 978-1482736441
Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform

Dox

Amok

When the government offers a twenty-four-year-old former Marine a five-figure payday, there’s only one question: Who does he have to kill?

1990. A restless young man called Dox is back home in Texas. His friends have missed him, and his mother and sisters need him. But after four years as a Marine and another as a CIA contractor fighting the Soviet Union alongside the Afghan mujahedeen, small-town life in Abilene is a suffocating dead end.

Another secret war, this one in Southeast Asia, offers a big payday and the solution to his family’s troubles. But secret wars are never what they’re billed to be, and Dox is about to get the education of his young life. Among the lessons―the only thing more dangerous than war is falling in love with your enemy.

Author: Barry Eisler
First Release: 2022
ISBN: 978-1542005647
Publisher: Thomas & Mercer

John Rain

A Clean Kill in Tokyo

Name: John Rain.

Vocation: Assassin.

Specialty: Natural Causes.

Base of operations: Tokyo.

Availability: Worldwide.

Half American, half Japanese, expert in both worlds but at home in neither, John Rain is the best killer money can buy. You tell him who. You tell him where. He doesn’t care about why…

Until he gets involved with Midori Kawamura, a beautiful jazz pianist―and the daughter of his latest kill.

NB: This book was previously published as Rain Fall.

Author: Barry Eisler
First Release: 2002
ISBN: 978-1477820803
Publisher: Thomas & Mercer
A Lonely Resurrection

All John Rain wants is to get out of the killing business. But with his discretion, his reliability, and his unique talent for death by “natural causes,” no one is willing to let him just retire. So when an old nemesis from the Japanese national police force comes to him with a new job—eliminate Murakami, a killer even more fearsome than Rain himself—he can’t refuse.

Aided by an achingly desirable half Brazilian, half Japanese exotic dancer he knows he shouldn’t trust, Rain pursues his quarry through underground no-holds-barred fight clubs, mobbed-up hostess bars, and finally into the heart of a shadow war between the CIA and the yakuza. It’s a war Rain can’t win, but also one he can’t afford to lose—a war where the distinctions between friend and foe and truth and deceit are as murky as the rain-slicked streets of Tokyo.

NB: This book was previously published as Hard Rain in the US and Blood From Blood in the UK.

Author: Barry Eisler
First Release: 2003
ISBN: 978-1477820810
Publisher: Thomas & Mercer
Winner Take All

John Rain has disappeared in Brazil to escape the killing business and the enemies encircling him in Japan. But the CIA isn’t willing to lose its premier “natural causes” contract killer, and they force Rain to take on a high-risk assignment: eliminate a ruthless arms dealer operating in Southeast Asia.

The upside? Financial, of course, along with the possibility of moral redemption. But first, Rain will have to survive the downside: a second assassin zeroing in on the target; an alluring and dangerous woman with an agenda of her own; the possibility that the entire mission is nothing but an elaborate setup.

From the gorgeous beaches of Rio to the glitzy casinos of Macau to the gritty back streets of Hong Kong and Kowloon, Rain becomes a reluctant player in an international game far deadlier and more insidious than any he has encountered before.

NB: This book was previously published as Rain Storm in the US and Choke Point in the UK.

Author: Barry Eisler
First Release: 2004
ISBN: 978-1477820827
Publisher: Thomas & Mercer
Redemption Games

After nearly dying while taking out a target in Hong Kong, Rain has a new employer, The Mossad, which wants him to fix a “problem” in Manila. He also has a new partner, Dox, whose good-ol’-boy persona masks a sniper as deadly as Rain himself. And he has a new hope: that by using his talents in the service of something good, he might atone for all the lives he has taken.

But when Rain’s conscience causes him to botch the Manila hit, he finds out the next problem The Mossad wants fixed is him. Is Delilah, his Mossad lover, coming to help him? Or was she sent to finish him off?

NB: This book was previously published as Killing Rain in the US and One Last Kill in the UK.

Author: Barry Eisler
First Release: 2005
ISBN: 978-1477820858
Publisher: Thomas & Mercer
Extremis

Even for an average citizen, a love triangle is dangerous business. For assassin John Rain―”one of the most compelling lead characters in the genre” (USA Today)―it’s going to be downright deadly.

When Rain learns that his former lover, Midori, has been raising their child in New York, Rain senses a chance for reconciliation, perhaps even for redemption.

But Midori and the child are being watched by Rain’s enemies, and Rain’s sudden appearance puts them in terrible danger. To save them, Rain is forced to use the same deadly talents he had been hoping to leave behind.

With the help of Tatsu, his one-time nemesis in the Japanese FBI; and Dox, the former Marine sniper whose good ol’ boy persona masks a killer as deadly as Rain himself, Rain races against time to bring his enemies into the open and eliminate them forever.

NB: This book was previously published as The Last Assassin.

Author: Barry Eisler
First Release: 2006
ISBN: 978-1477820841
Publisher: Thomas & Mercer
The Killer Ascendant

For Rain, “the most charismatic assassin since James Bond” (San Francisco Chronicle), getting out of the life was never going to be easy. But with a new identity in Paris, and the help of his lover, Mossad agent Delilah, he was beginning to leave the killing business behind.

And then he receives a message from rogue CIA operative Jim Hilger: We have your friend Dox. Do as we tell you, or he dies.

For a professional like Rain, the choice ought to be easy: do the job―a series of three hits―and save his friend and partner. But how does Rain know Hilger won’t kill Dox, anyway, once the assignment is complete? How does he know each of the hits isn’t simultaneously a setup for Rain himself? Most of all, how can he control the killing rage Hilger’s lethal game of extortion reignites inside him?

From the deceptively tranquil beaches of Bali, to the backstreets and boulevards of Paris, to the urban canyons of Silicon Valley and New York and the old killing fields of Vietnam, Rain must grapple with his age, his enemies, and, most of all, with the killer inside himself in a battle not even Rain can hope to survive intact.

NB: This book was previously published as Requiem for an Assassin.

Author: Barry Eisler
First Release: 2007
ISBN: 978-1477820834
Publisher: Thomas & Mercer
Paris Is A Bitch: A John Rain Novella

For most couples, a quiet dinner for two at Auberge de la Reine Blanche on the Ile Saint Louis would be just the thing to smooth out the complications in a romance.

But for gorgeous Mossad operative Delilah and trying-to-retire contract killer John Rain, nothing is ever easy, and when Rain sees a crew of hard-looking men setting up outside the restaurant, he realizes someone has been bringing her work home with her.

Is it a hit -- or something even worse? When it comes to killing, business and pleasure is the most dangerous mix of all.

Author: Barry Eisler
First Release: 2011
Ebook: B004XQVKR4
Publisher: Barry Eisler
The Detachment

When legendary black ops veteran Colonel Scott “Hort” Horton tracks Rain down in Tokyo, Rain can’t resist the offer: a multi-million dollar payday for the “natural causes” demise of three ultra-high-profile targets who are dangerously close to launching a coup in America.

But the opposition on this job is going to be too much for even Rain to pull it off alone. He’ll need a detachment of other deniable irregulars: his partner, the former Marine sniper, Dox. Ben Treven, a covert operator with ambivalent motives and conflicted loyalties. And Larison, a man with a hair trigger and a secret he’ll kill to protect.

From the shadowy backstreets of Tokyo and Vienna, to the deceptive glitz and glamour of Los Angeles and Las Vegas, and finally to a Washington, D.C. in a permanent state of war, these four lone wolf killers will have to survive presidential hit teams, secret CIA prisons, and a national security state as obsessed with guarding its own secrets as it is with invading the privacy of the populace.

But first, they’ll have to survive each other.

Author: Barry Eisler
First Release: 2011
ISBN: 978-1612181554
Publisher: Thomas & Mercer
Graveyard of Memories

What makes a legendary assassin? For John Rain, it was the lessons of love, war, and betrayal he learned in Tokyo in 1972.

Fresh from the killing fields of Southeast Asia, Rain works as a bagman under the watchful eye of his CIA handler, delivering cash to corrupt elements of the Japanese government. But when a delivery goes violently wrong, Rain finds himself in the crosshairs of Japan’s most powerful yakuza clan.

To survive, Rain strikes a desperate deal with his handler: take out a high-profile target in the Japanese government in exchange for the intel he needs to eliminate his would-be executioners.

As Rain plays cat and mouse with the yakuza and struggles to learn his new role as contract killer, he also becomes entangled with Sayaka, a tough, beautiful ethnic Korean woman confined to a wheelchair. But the demands of his dark work are at odds with the longings of his heart―and with Sayaka’s life in the balance, Rain will have to make a terrible choice.

Author: Barry Eisler
First Release: 2014
ISBN: 978-1477818169
Publisher: Thomas & Mercer
Zero Sum

Returning to Tokyo in 1982 after a decade of mercenary work in the Philippines, a young John Rain learns that the killing business is now controlled by Victor, a half-Russian, half-Japanese sociopath who has ruthlessly eliminated all potential challengers.

Victor gives Rain a choice: kill a government minister or die a grisly death. But the best route to the minister is through his gorgeous Italian wife, Maria, a route that puts Rain on a collision course not only with Victor but with the shadowy forces behind the Russian's rise to dominance―and the longings of Rain's own conflicted heart.

It's a battle between kingpin and newcomer, master and apprentice, a zero-sum contest that can only end with one man dead and the other the world's foremost assassin.

Author: Barry Eisler
First Release: 2017
ISBN: 978-1477824467
Publisher: Thomas & Mercer
The Killer Collective

When a joint FBI–Seattle Police investigation of an international child pornography ring gets too close to certain powerful people, sex-crimes detective Livia Lone becomes the target of a hit that barely goes awry―a hit that had been offered to John Rain, a retired specialist in “natural causes.”

Suspecting the FBI itself was behind the attack, Livia reaches out to former Marine sniper Dox. Together, they assemble an ad hoc group to identify and neutralize the threat. There’s Rain. Rain’s estranged lover, Mossad agent and honeytrap specialist Delilah. And black ops soldiers Ben Treven and Daniel Larison, along with their former commander, SpecOps legend Colonel Scot “Hort” Horton.

Moving from Japan to Seattle to DC to Paris, the group fights a series of interlocking conspiracies, each edging closer and closer to the highest levels of the US government.

With uncertain loyalties, conflicting agendas, and smoldering romantic entanglements, these operators will have a hard time forming a team. But in a match as uneven as this one, a collective of killers might be even better.

Author: Barry Eisler
First Release: 2019
ISBN: 978-1503900950
Publisher: Thomas & Mercer
The Chaos Kind

Assistant US Attorney Alondra Diaz hates traffickers. And she’s determined to put one of America’s most powerful financiers, Andrew Schrader, in prison forever for his crimes against children.

But Schrader has videos implicating some of the most powerful members of the US national security state. To eliminate Diaz, the powers that be bring in a contractor: Marvin Manus, an implacable assassin whose skills have been forged in intelligence, the military, and the hardest prisons.

Enter former Marine sniper Dox and black-ops veteran Daniel Larison with an unusual assignment: not to kill Diaz, but to keep her alive.

A lot of players are determined to acquire the videos and the blackmail power they represent. But with Seattle sex-crimes detective Livia Lone, “natural causes” killer John Rain, and ex-Mossad honey-trap specialist Delilah, the good guys might just have a chance.

They’re not going to play by anyone else’s rules. They’re not going to play by any rules at all. They want a different kind of fight. The chaos kind.

Author: Barry Eisler
First Release: 2021
ISBN: 978-1542005593
Publisher: Thomas & Mercer

Livia Lone

Livia Lone

Seattle PD sex-crimes detective Livia Lone knows the monsters she hunts. Sold by her Thai parents along with her little sister, Nason; abused by the men who trafficked them; marooned in America…the only thing that kept Livia alive as a teenager was her determination to find Nason.

Livia has never stopped looking. And she copes with her failure to protect her sister by doing everything she can to put predators in prison.

Or, when that fails, by putting them in the ground.

But when a fresh lead offers new hope of finding Nason and the men who trafficked them both, Livia will have to go beyond just being a cop. Beyond even being a vigilante. She’ll have to relive the horrors of the past. Take on one of the most powerful men in the US government. And uncover a conspiracy of almost unimaginable evil.

In every way, it’s an unfair fight. But Livia has two advantages: her unending love for Nason―

And a lifelong lust for vengeance.

Author: Barry Eisler
First Release: 2016
ISBN: 978-1503939653
Publisher: Thomas & Mercer
The Night Trade

For sex-crimes detective Livia Lone, a position with a government anti-trafficking task force is a chance to return to Thailand to ferret out Rithisak Sorm, the kingpin behind her own childhood ordeal.

But after a planned takedown in a nightclub goes violently awry, Livia discovers that she’s not the only one hunting Sorm. Former marine sniper Dox has a score to settle, too, and working together is the only way to take Sorm out.

Livia and Dox couldn’t be less alike. But they share a single-minded creed: the law has to serve justice. And if it doesn’t, justice has to be served another way.

What they don’t know is that in threatening Sorm, they’re also threatening a far-reaching conspiracy―one involving the highest levels of America’s own intelligence apparatus. It turns out that killing Sorm just might be the easy part. The real challenge will be payback from his protectors.

Author: Barry Eisler
First Release: 2018
ISBN: 978-1477820032
Publisher: Thomas & Mercer
All the Devils

A search for a pair of serial rapists leads Livia Lone down the darkest and most dangerous trail of her life...

Ten years ago, the daughter of Homeland Security Investigations agent B. D. Little vanished into thin air. So did seven other girls―the crimes all bearing the same signature characteristics.

Now the disappearances have begun again. And Agent Little’s efforts to investigate are being blocked by forces far above his pay grade. Desperate, he turns to Seattle sex-crimes detective Livia Lone, the most obsessive hunter of predators Little knows.

Livia will need that obsessiveness, and a lot more. Because the two men Little is pursuing are fearsome. Both Special Forces veterans with a dozen tours in Iraq between them. Both sadists and serial rapists. And one, the congressman scion of the vice president of the United States―a man who will use all his power to protect his son’s secrets and further his own ambitions.

The conspirators have all the assets and all the angles. And every reason to believe they’ll evade justice, as they always have before.

They don’t understand that for Livia Lone, justice is only a guideline. Revenge is the rule.

Author: Barry Eisler
First Release: 2019
ISBN: 978-1542094221
Publisher: Thomas & Mercer

Non-fiction

The Ass Is A Poor Receptacle For The Head

By internationally bestselling thriller author and syndicated political blogger Barry Eisler, THE ASS IS A POOR RECEPTACLE FOR THE HEAD is a must-read for anyone interested in verbally crushing the competition in politics, business, and even romance.

Regardless of what you think of their policies, the sad truth is that Democrats suck at selling their ideas to the public.

In this hilarious and hard-hitting essay, Eisler draws on his expertise in narrative, his CIA training in persuasion, and his background in technology marketing to offer Democrats some sound advice on how to improve their communications strategy. Borrowing principles from judo and boxing, Eisler encourages Democrats (and anyone trying to sell an idea) to hammer their opponents into a rhetorical corner…and knock them the hell out!

Author: Barry Eisler
First Release: 2011
Ebook: B0050O7VLW

Novellas

The Lost Coast

For Larison, a man off the grid and on the run, the sleepy northern California town of Arcata, gateway to the state's fabled Lost Coast, seems like a perfect place to disappear for a while. But Arcata isn't nearly as sleepy as it seems, and when three locals decide Larison would make a perfect target for their twisted sport, Larison exacts a lifetime of vengeance in one explosive evening.

Includes an interview with novelist J.A. Konrath.

Warning: This story is intended for mature audiences, and contains depictions of sexual activity, though perhaps not in the way you're expecting.

Author: Barry Eisler
First Release: 2011
Ebook: B004P1IXQ8
Publisher: Barry Eisler
The Khmer Kill

For former Marine sniper Dox, a long-range hit in Cambodia was supposed to be just business as usual. But when you find yourself mixed up with rogue intelligence operations, gorgeous bar girls, and the world's worst human-trafficking heart of darkness, business is anything but usual. And making it personal is the most dangerous business of all.

Author: Barry Eisler
First Release: 2012
Ebook: B008674IA2
Publisher: Thomas & Mercer
London Twist

For Delilah, the Mossad's top seductress, the parameters of the assignment were routine. The contractor: MI6. The objective: infiltrate a terror network, this one operating out of London. The stakes: a series of poison gas attacks on civilian population centers.

There's just one wrinkle. The target is a woman--as smart, beautiful, and committed as Delilah herself. And for a cynical operative thrust suddenly out of her element, the twists and turns of the spy game are nowhere near as dangerous as the secrets and desires of the human heart.

Author: Barry Eisler
First Release: 2013
Ebook: B00BD72MIM
Publisher: Thomas & Mercer