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377 Reviews
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109 of 112 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great and profound read on the Booker List
One of the most readable literary titles on this year's unpredictably eclectic Man Booker Longlist. Highly enjoyable and intricate but without being preachy and tedious. The story of a mixed-blood English young man in pre-war Malaya who befriends a Japanese diplomat.

The writing sometimes rises to poetry without being incomprehensible, and the author never...
Published on 3 Sept. 2007 by S. Charter

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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Emotionally draining novel about wartime collaboration
Set in Penang, Malaya, this novel spans decades, from the dying days of the Chinese imperial court, to the collapse of the British empire to Japanese hostilities in World War Two.

This novel is emotionally draining. Tan Twan Eng is a very talented writer, he made me sympathise with so many of the characters, but especially Philip, who's life is so tragic that I...
Published 19 months ago by Miss A C R Finch


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5.0 out of 5 stars Get lost in a Book, 16 April 2013
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This review is from: The Gift of Rain (Kindle Edition)
I have read other books by this author and find they take you into the world of the far east in an almost dream like way. I love the style or witting and would recommend to anyone who is looking for something a bit different from the thousands of detective books flooding the market.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A majestic and beautiful book, 14 April 2013
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I could write pages on this masterpiece but would just encourage you to buy this book and you will understand.

solmagwind.
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5.0 out of 5 stars rain, 13 April 2013
This review is from: The Gift of Rain (Kindle Edition)
I read this novel when it was first published in I think 2008. I was most impressed with the story told and the writing. The memory of the impression I keep in my mind has stayed since my first reading of it. I am currently reading it for a book club evening to be held soon. I hope my fellow readers will enjoy it also. It is a long novel and it covers a range of events and influences in the life of Philip the narrator. It is one I would recommend.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Gift of Rain, 11 April 2013
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Obviously this predates The Garden of Evening Mists (which was a superb book) but nevertheless a very good read and I was very immersed in the story
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5.0 out of 5 stars the gift of rain, 3 April 2013
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This review is from: The Gift of Rain (Kindle Edition)
very well writtengood descripions of scenery peaple places gooog goog good ggood good good goood goodgood cant say any more
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5.0 out of 5 stars Thoroughly enjoyable, 21 Mar. 2013
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A well written book with excellant descriptions that it has made me add the country of Malaya and the island of Penang to my must visit list. Less confusing than his other book that jumps across time. It had me in tears in places and could not put it down even when I knew I had to be up early the next morning.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Exotic places with unforgettable atrocities. A spell-binding read., 20 Mar. 2013
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This review is from: The Gift of Rain (Kindle Edition)
The Gift of Rain may be the first book written by the author but the depth of his imaginative story telling suggests otherwise.
Tan Twan Eng re-creates love, tranquillity, splendour and undiluted beauty with his words, his narrative envelopes me into pre war Malaya entwining me into the characters, the struggles of the family and above all, the challenges faced by young Philip Hutton as he grows up with mixed heritage, different from his siblings.
A much older Philip tells his story, how a trusting and all encompassing relationship develops with his Sensei, a Japanese gentleman renting an island as his home from the Huttons. The love, trust and sense of belonging which spans back many lifetimes deepens with Endo-San whilst the insidiousness of what was to come quietly grazes.
I watch as the innocence, certainty and complete faith of a young man becomes un-ravelled as the Japanese invade Malaya and reality slaps him hard on the face! I watch Philip attempt to cope with his up-turned way of being, working for the Japanese whilst all around him consider him to be a traitor, all that is except his Sensei, Endo-San.
I seriously recommend this book to anyone who may stumble upon it and question should they invest in it. Do so. I doubt if you will regret it.
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5.0 out of 5 stars very good read, 10 Mar. 2013
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I like the geographical setting and the historical context; fascinating insight and the characters did come to life for me. I did want to read on and find out what happened next, throughout.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Japanese component and era, well portrayed., 2 Feb. 2013
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Worth reading. Read both books by him. Enjoyed the complicated plots. Difficult subject matter,but good detail about the characters and the relationships between them.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant book, 31 Jan. 2013
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Fantastic story about Philips journey into adulthood and the consequences of the decisions he makes along the way. A beautifully written historical novel. The descriptions of Penang are so vivid I feel as though I've been transported through time to another world.
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The Gift of Rain
The Gift of Rain by Tan Twan Eng (Hardcover - 8 Mar. 2007)
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