In the 1970s and 80s, hot on Bruce Lee’s tails came the ninja invasion. My friends and I spent many a summer night dressed in our ninja suits wandering around town
solving crimes engaging in mischief. We started with wooden swords and foam rubber nunchucks but eventually graduated to real weapons, which today would probably get you shot or killed.
Ninja: The Invisible Assassins by Andrew Adams was like my Ninja Bible. It covered everything, from how ninjas would perform undercover secret missions to all the hidden rooms and trap doors they would build into their awesome ninja houses. In this book I learned that ninjas would wait until moonless nights to launch their missions, so that they could hide in the darkness. It also taught me about these:
These are Kuji-In, which were secret ninjitsu hand signals. What were they for? What did they mean? We didn’t know. We just saw the guys in Revenge of the Ninja doing them, so we figured they must be important and we practiced them on the bus ride home after school every day. You can see them in action here, about 45 seconds into this epic clip.
Ninja: The Invisible Assassins was before its time, originally published in 1970 and released in paperback in 1973. Not only does Amazon still have the book for sale, but you can peek inside and check it out for yourself.