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Year of the Tiger [Paperback]

Lisa Brackman
3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
RRP: 6.99
Price: 5.57 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
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Book Description

26 April 2012

An electrifying thriller debut set in modern China, in a world of artists, paranoid revolutionaries and government conspiracies…

First she tried to start over. Now she’s just trying to survive.

ON HER OWN

Ellie Cooper’s tour of duty in Iraq left her with a damaged leg, a faithless husband, and a desperate need to get away. In Beijing, she falls for charismatic Chinese artist Lao Zhang but, after the arrival of a mysterious guest, he disappears…

ON THE RUN

Her cheating husband, Trey, tracks her down to demand a divorce. But far more disturbing are the Chinese and American agents who begin to hound Ellie for Lao Zhang’s whereabouts.

AND A LONG WAY FROM HOME

When things suddenly turn threatening, Ellie turns fugitive, convinced there’s a hidden agenda – one that involves something she should never have seen in Iraq – something that could get her killed. Now she’s alone, in a country she barely knows, falling down a rabbit hole of conspiracies from which she can’t escape…


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Product details

  • Paperback: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Harper (26 April 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0007453191
  • ISBN-13: 978-0007453191
  • Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 19.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,061,909 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Review

‘A compelling debut that takes you deep into the dangerous, complicated heart of modern China, with a tough and appealing heroine in Ellie’ Jeff Abbott, author of FEAR

‘Lisa Brackman’s novel gets off to a fast start and never lets up…Ellie is a perfect spunky heroine…Be prepared for a wild ride’ New York Times Book Review

‘An electrifying debut … The China scenes are fast paced and strikingly atmospheric, and Ellie's backstory—her and Trey's return from combat is tough, sad, and endearing—is given in doses that perfectly complement the central action … The book's exotic setting and tough heroine will definitely appeal to fans of Stieg Larsson’ Publisher’s Weekly, Starred Review

‘A remarkable debut by Lisa Brackman’ Seattle Times

‘Lisa Brackman’s debut novel is as slick and smart as an alley cat … The result is a wildly original read … Even more remarkable is her enfant terrible protagonist: 26-year-old Ellie is tough, snarky and immensely likeable. Through her voice Brackman never falls into the trite and tired trap of so many foreigners who write about an ‘exotic’ China. Beijing in Year of the Tiger is as it is in real life’ Time Out: Beijing

‘A gripping ex-pat nightmare that unfolds with superb pacing … it makes you damned glad your life is boring’ Miami Herald

‘Brackman's experience in the motion picture industry is evident. A gritty and intriguing tale of terror that draws in the reader with each page; Brackman is a new writer to watch’ Library Journal

About the Author

Lisa Brackman has worked as an executive at a major motion picture studio, an issues researcher in a presidential campaign, and as the singer-songwriter & bassist in an LA rock band. She's lived and travelled extensively in China. Brackman is a southern California native and lives in Venice, CA. YEAR OF THE TIGER is her first novel.


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Everyone is after her - what is it she knows? 21 Aug 2012
By HJK VINE VOICE
Format:Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I thought this book was an excellent thriller - full of action - never knowing who is trustworthy and who is not.

Ellie/Yili, an American, was a Medic in Iraq on a tour of duty, where she met her husband, Trey, - they later move to China and now her husband wants divorce.

The story is told by Ellie and it moves from the now, back to Iraq and then again to China.

American & Chinese agents are after her and she does not understand why.

I spent some time in China in the 90s - then mobile phones and using the internet was rare so I cannot comment on that aspect - but the descriptions of the real (not tourist China) are very good, Beijing, Xian and Chungdu and the train journeys are as I remember them - the dust, dirt & smells are all there - and this for me made the novel even more interesting - as a foreigner one always felt "alone" and "watched" - so this novel feels it could be real.

One is still left wondering EXACTLY who the good/bad guys were and this uncertainty sends little shivers down ones spine!

An excellent read.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Parallel realities 24 July 2012
By Amazon Customer TOP 1000 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Ellie/Yili has spent the past 2 years in China after some tough years in the aftermath of her stationing as a medic with the US army in Iraq. She is finally starting to move on with a lover, basic language skills, good friends amongst both the expat and Chinese communities, and less pain from the physical and emotional scars she got in Iraq.

And then her lover disappears and she must not only try to find him but also try to save herself as both American and Chinese agents seem to have taken a sudden interest in her and it is not clear whether it is related to what she accidentally discovered in Iraq or whether it is to do with his disappearance.

The main story is spiced up with flashbacks from her time in Iraq and - interestingly - a virtual reality where she might be able to get help to find her lover by people that are too scared to come out in real life.

The story itself is maybe a bit convoluted, but the energetic and exotic setting is extremely well done with a fantastic sense of atmosphere. She clearly knows the place and customs and she doesn't fall into the usual trap of having to explain every little detail to the reader. I could mention 20+ places in the book where you just can't help nodding and smiling as she describes a situation but the one that stands out right now is at the expat bar where she sits with the British bartender, his wife, and two Norwegian backpackers after a drinks-fuelled evening and the backpackers voice their well-used but not fully rounded arguments on American imperialism and the bartender looks like he'd rather drown himself than be in the middle of the situation. I don't know how many times I've witnessed that particular talk at the end of a night - and, to my shame, I'm even sure I've given it a few times - but it hasn't changed much over the years :)

All in all a very good summer read!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Year of the Tiger 22 July 2012
By G. Archer VINE VOICE
Format:Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Ellie McEnroe is a former US medic who was injured, both mentally and physically, while completing a tour of duty in Iraq. Her marriage fell apart - her husband Trey all but abandoned her for another woman (who he has since married) and she's trying to put her life back together piece by piece while living with her "sometimes lover",an artist named Lao Zghang,in China. Shortly after meeting a guest, Hashim - an Uigher - for a few moments in Zghang's flat one day, her lover vanishes. Ellie finds herself in a dangerous position and a person of interest to both US mercenaries and Chinese agents. On the run she must try to figure out who she can trust between the artists, "men in suits" and a mysterious organisation which appears to be her ally but who hide behind, and communicate through, an online game. Reliant on a dwindling supply of Percocet for her physical pain, never mind the PTSD, the reader is given an insight into Ellie's past through flashbacks to her time in Iraq which mingle with and part explain the present day.
One of the strengths of Lisa Brackmans writing is her description and detail of life and living in China. Clearly very knowledgable and enthusiastic about the whole culture, she has woven an incredibly vivid backdrop for this thriller which moves quickly between the ancient culture of China right up to present day internet communities. Totally captivating from start to finish I enjoyed the character of Ellie who seemed real and believable though a bit irritating and lacklustre at times.
Year of the Tiger would make a great movie and I would like to see more of Ellie in a future Lisa Brackman novel.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Tiger shining bright 7 May 2012
By Mr. B. W. Haynes VINE VOICE
Format:Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
There is a saying along the lines of, "if you see evil being done and do nothing about it, you are as guilty of sin as the perpetrators".
Ellie Cooper is put in this position and the repercussions follow her from the US to China. Along with the fall our from her failed army career and marriage, she finds herself caught up in a dangerous political situation.
A fast moving plot ensures a thriller that engages you from the start, taking you from well known cities to villages that have never featured in Lonely Planet.
A really good read from this wroter.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gritty, Realistic, Engaging 29 April 2012
Format:Paperback
In YEAR OF THE TIGER, Lisa Brackman creates a very realistic world, peopled by characters you'd swear live and breathe. The protagonist, Ellie, is flawed. She's not the typical, perfect heroine, always coming out on top. In fact, she drifts and runs, stumbling from one moment to the next, questioning everything around her, including her own motives. I like that. It's a fresh approach and was a pleasant surprise.

Another thing Brackman does brilliantly is to make modern China come alive. I had a very real sense of each locale as a place, with the little touches that brought each place to life for me. I could see these places in my imagination and I also like that a lot.

The plot is taut and while Ellie is unsure of what is going on, Brackman is not and brings us unerringly to a realistic and satisfying conclusion.

I highly recommend this novel.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
1.0 out of 5 stars Liked the title - didn't like the book
Not really my genre. I think it' mainly for people who know China/ who are familiar with computer games played over the internet. Read more
Published 13 days ago by Silver Lady
5.0 out of 5 stars modern china exposed
This book kept me engrossed throughout and reminded me of china I recently visited ! Also the espionage aspect including us troop s in afganistan and the heroines relationship... Read more
Published 2 months ago by Rozzie
3.0 out of 5 stars It's ok
Pluses:

An unusual tale written with an attention to detail from someone who thoroughly knows their subject. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Christian
4.0 out of 5 stars Thrilling...
This had me riveted throughout and the pace just didn't let up. The story is told by Elie who has quite a lot of emotional baggage to deal with after having served in Iraq and... Read more
Published 3 months ago by Me read
3.0 out of 5 stars A passable thriller
I was attracted to this book because I have enjoyed a number of novels set in China, notably the Inspector Chen mystery series. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Sarah Durston
3.0 out of 5 stars A good story, quite fast moving but did not hold ...
A good story, quite fast moving but did not hold my full attention, I found the main character a bit too super human,
Published 4 months ago by Sylvia Butler
3.0 out of 5 stars Mixed feelings
Some good ideas, rather over-complicated story and slightly uneven style/quality of writing but I quite enjoyed it in spite of all that.
Published 5 months ago by jg
4.0 out of 5 stars intriguing read
this is a really intriguing read that I just couldn't put down once I got into it. made you feel like you were really in China!
Published 6 months ago by Rosie
2.0 out of 5 stars No, nothing like Stieg Larsson
If, like me, you were drawn to the comparison with Stieg Larsson, don't bother.

Yes, there is a woman running from and railing against the hidden hand of mysterious... Read more
Published 6 months ago by El Loro
4.0 out of 5 stars GOOD READ
A good read if a little unbelievable at times! Nice writing style. Will look out for more by this author.
Published 6 months ago by Aneesh
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