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DEFAULT
 
 

DEFAULT [Kindle Edition]

Anjo Bordell
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

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Product Description

Product Description

Anjo Bordell’s debut novel Default chronicles one massive hijink told from both ends, hopscotching two monumental eras: the rotting rump of the American Century and the rough and ready kickoff to the Chinese one.

Raw deals and tough luck, shenanigans and hypocrisy, all overseen by a ubiquitous right-wing tabloid that drags the reluctant lead from the American South to an accidental enlistment into the Marines, to California, and then to Shanghai, where the two threads converge and boil over, sealing Bordell’s fate as his rent finally comes due.

Half expat novel and half Great American Adventure, Default is an inventive fusing of parts one and four of a sweeping magnum opus, the first and last books of a bombastic quartet. All-encompassing and intertwined, with distant, contrasting decades skillfully woven into a semi-autobiographical haymaker that will not be soon forgotten.

It’s picaresque, it’s satire, a kick in the pants to the heroes and institutions Americans hold dear. And what is America today if not an obsolete collection of slogans and euphemisms, pretense and nonsense? A parody of itself, a tabloid of epic proportions.

But the jingles and sound bites of American exceptionalism would have died long ago had the façade of this crumbling empire not been propped up by its colossal military. And what is the vanguard of this steamrolling juggernaut? The tip of the spear, the knuckles of the American fist? The Army? The Air Force? “The Marines!” says a wide-eyed Bordell. “The Marines are famous!” He has it all figured out.

Shanghai is famous too, by the way, only for reasons the locals would like to forget. Not so fast! With the release of Default, this lovely metropolis is once again on the map. Indeed, Default was meticulously penned in the confines of the author’s dingy Shanghai apartment. Amid falling plaster and leaking pipes, he resolved to present the world with this gift, this offering, as gratitude for having survived the meat grinder for so many years. This is his evidence, Exhibit A, a testament to his time on this infernal planet.

Do yourself a favor and click "Look inside." Read it now. You won’t regret it. On behalf of a grateful nation.



Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 4216 KB
  • Print Length: 367 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Anjo Bordell (4 Jun 2014)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00K3Q8VJ8
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #556,344 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars A good read 17 Aug 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I enjoyed this book. The structure of the book is first person narrative which moves at a very fast pace and flips context frequently. Set in China and US, the story is a fictionalised account of Anjo's time in the US Marines and misadventures in Shanghai. The style of the narrative is cynical and humorous (frequently at the expense of the American psyche).

The first person perspective does prevent exploring other characters in depth, and at times I felt it went a little too fast. But at other parts of the book, the style flows well and is very engaging. There's also many familiar references for those who have spent time in China or the Marines. Overall, a pretty good read.
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5.0 out of 5 stars An Exceptional Novel 3 July 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Default, Anjo Bordell’s debut novel, is a roman-a-clef which fictionalizes, thinly we suspect, his stint in the US Marines and his post-Marine life in Shanghai. The story begins in Shanghai, in the present, in a way you might expect an expat-China-yarn would, but then moves through a series of stateside flashbacks relayed alongside events (in reverse chronological order) that occur in Shanghai in a way you could never predict or imagine. The premise or structure is fairly conventional. But the stories aren’t. Neither is the writing.

I’ve never read anything like Default. It’s so original, I wondered at the writer’s inspirations. Traces of Vonnegut, perhaps? Beyond that, I couldn’t guess. The penmanship is excellent, and the narrative frequently grabs you by the lapels and gives you a good shake. Details which you thought were ornamental return with significance. The plotlines overlap, interact, and collide, and a thousand particles of meaning swim around and smash into each other. Default is comical and dark, and captures the absurdities that can follow us no matter where we go.

I thought this book was exceptional and highly unique. My only reservation was that it was a little long, but I don’t know what could have been cut. Lots of memorable characters here; lots of bizarre and laugh-out-loud moments. Default is a ripping good read, one that belongs on a best-sellers’ list. Five stars.

Troy Parfitt
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.8 out of 5 stars  4 reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An American Satire, Highly Recommended 12 Jun 2014
By Kindle Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
An American satire, brilliantly written, Default is unlike any novel I have read. A quick start, then a slow but steady buildup of momentum, all events lead to the final punch line... like having sex, dirty, witty, finally getting impatient... the ending is cathartically satisfactory. The entire book makes you giggle, laugh, sigh and think. Through the seemingly voluntary but intrinsically involuntary adventure of one American youth, the author gives an alarming wake-up call: Is it really the end of American Century? I suspect that people from both the right and the left will either love or hate the book.

I'll give 10/10 for the author's admirable command of the language - the sarcasm and mockery flows naturally throughout the book, all in the absence of vulgarity. The structure of the story is also very novel. With all these unique features, Anjo Bordell may have created a new genre of novel.

I am an expat myself. In an attempt to understand other expats' lives in China, especially Shanghai, I came across this book. Highly recommended.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Exceptional Novel 3 July 2014
By Troy Parfitt - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition
Default, Anjo Bordell’s debut novel, is a roman-a-clef which fictionalizes, thinly we suspect, his stint in the US Marines and his post-Marine life in Shanghai. The story begins in Shanghai, in the present, in a way you might expect an expat-China-yarn would, but then moves through a series of stateside flashbacks relayed alongside events (in reverse chronological order) that occur in Shanghai in a way you could never predict or imagine. The premise or structure is fairly conventional. But the stories aren’t. Neither is the writing.

I’ve never read anything like Default. It’s so original, I wondered at the writer’s inspirations. Traces of Vonnegut, perhaps? Beyond that, I couldn’t guess. The penmanship is excellent, and the narrative frequently grabs you by the lapels and gives you a good shake. Details which you thought were ornamental return with significance. The plotlines overlap, interact, and collide, and a thousand particles of meaning swim around and smash into each other. Default is comical and dark, and captures the absurdities that can follow us no matter where we go.

I thought this book was exceptional and highly unique. My only reservation was that it was a little long, but I don’t know what could have been cut. Lots of memorable characters here; lots of bizarre and laugh-out-loud moments. Default is a ripping good read, one that belongs on a best-sellers’ list. Five stars.

Troy Parfitt
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A unique and unforgettable reading experience 19 Jun 2014
By Matt James - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition
I've never written an Amazon review before, but this is the first time I've been compelled to, because, simply put, Default is unlike any story I've ever read before, I can honestly say that It was a delight to get to know this novel and its author.

This book is one of a kind. The prose and writing style is a sign of the author's passion, and you can practically feel the careful dedication he pored over literally every single sentence. The jaded, negativity one feels while existing in China as an expat is brought to life in an engaging vivid display of writing prowess.

As for existing in the Marine corps, I have no idea, but I expected this to be filler content. How wrong I was. Again, using a writing style I've never before seen -, every droplet of blood, sweat and... puke - is described in a no-holds-barred approach that doesn't so much capture your attention, as it does smack you around the head and cement your eyes to the text, with its, oftentimes, brutal imagery.

Truly, it's a joy to read. The slow boiling cynicism that simmers throughout the book results in a satisfying finale in the final act that I didn't see coming.

5/5. Will read again. BUY THIS BOOK!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars This is a good read. One has to read it slowly or ... 24 July 2014
By tinman - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This is a good read. One has to read it slowly or you might get lost. It's funny and anyone who has ever served in the military should get the humor. I liked the way the author was able to describe China in such detail. Good book and well worth the price.
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