'A sheer pleasure to read.'  The New York Times. 

IN 1611, London's merchants received an intriguing letter written by a marooned English mariner named William Adams. Seven adventurers were sent to Japan by the East India Company with orders to find and befriend Adams.
It was believed that he held the key to exploiting the opulent riches of this forbidden country. But when they arrived they discovered that William Adams had gone native.
Drawn from the letters of William Adams, along with the private diaries of East India Company adventurers, Samurai William sheds light on the dangers of attempting to trade with early 17th century Japan.

UK edition available from Amazon|Waterstones
US edition available from Amazon|Barnes&Noble


‘Giles Milton is a man who can take an event from history and make it come alive… He has a genius for lively prose, and an appreciation for historical credibility. With Samurai William, he has crafted an inspiration for those of us who believe that history can be exciting and entertaining.’ Matthew Redhead, The Times.

‘Giles Milton has once again shown himself to be a master of historical narrative. The story of William Adams is a gripping tale of Jacobean derring-do, a fizzing, real-life Boy’s Own adventure underpinned by genuine scholarship.’ Katie Hickman, The Sunday Times.

‘Giles Milton presents [Adams’s story] with undisguised gusto. His notes and bibliography make it clear that he has absorbed much of the voluminous secondary literature on this period and on Adams himself.' Jonathan Spence, The New York Review.

‘Giles Milton has been assiduous in searching through all the published sources … if it brings more readers to the marvelous story of how West discovered East, and East discovered West, that’s good.’ Anthony Thwaite, The Sunday Telegraph.

‘A vivid, scrupulously researched biography … it is a sheer pleasure to read Milton’s vivid portraits of the small corps of foreigners who traded at the sufferance of Japanese feudal lords.’ Susan Chira, The New York Times.

‘He [Milton] recounts in graphic detail - much from primary sources - the astounding hardships and hardihood of those explorers of a dangerous unknown.’ The Washington Times.