Alexander Bennett is one of the foremost Western authorities on the history and practice of Japanese martial arts. Sharing his insights accumulated over a period of more than thirty years, his oeuvre promises to become an indispensable guide for "gai-sam", the modern gaijin samurai. Unconventional in style and highly readable, Bennett expands on the history of bushido, on the origins of the samurai and the core concepts of their philosophy: these chapters will be of great interest to anyone with a penchant for Japanese history. Bennett further examines the role of martial arts in modern Japan, presenting the nine contemporary budo arts and taking a closer look at budo training in Japanese schools and at life at a typical Japanese dojo. His survival guide for Japan is essential for any foreigner seeking to survive in Japan: he covers accommodation, public transportation, drugs, insurance, etc. and - most invaluable - learning the Japanese language thoroughly. Abundantly illustrated and immensely entertaining, I enjoyed the book very much. Highly recommended.