1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Easy to read but ultimately forgettable,
This review is from: The Piano Teacher (Paperback)Essentially the plot of this book is split in two - pre world war two leading into the war in Hong Kong compared with post war Hong Kong. A main character links the two plots in which he has romantic liaisons with two women. The book gradually reveals the links between the two time periods through the common character of Will.
While there are two distinct time periods, really the post war section seems to serve only as a foil to reveal a few plot twists linking to the war time section. The two plot sections do not marry well at all and I believe the entire piano teacher character from the post war section could have been dispensed with (pretty worrying when she is the eponymous heroine!)There is one point (where she becomes a petty thief) where I thought the piano teacher was going to blossom into a fascinating character - but this plotline effectively just reaches a dead end.
I finished reading this book and wondered what the point of it was. The plot does not seem to be well formed. Ultimately the character of Trudy is the high point of the novel and is so well developed that she makes everyone else (and even the plot) seem pale and inconsequential. The creation of such a vibrant, exciting character is is a compliment to the author - but unfortunately the rest of the book does not match up to her.
Notwithstanding these criticisms, this is a readable book which nicely illustrates the nature of Hong Kong during the second world war. There is a decent plot twist which I didn't see coming - and which to a certain extent links the two halves of the plot. But ultimately this was not sufficient to my mind to justify the post war part of the plot which did not add much value.
This is a holiday read - no more, no less. It leaves your mind almost immediately when you finish it and I certainly didn't feel the need to rush back for the next chapter that you get with the best kind of books. It is a shame that such a vibrant character as Trudy was not put into a better plot. But as she was not, this can't get more than 3 stars.