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Customer Review

6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Subtle and beautiful, 27 Nov. 2009
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This review is from: A Pale View of Hills (Paperback)
After reading The Remains of The Day, Never Let Me Go and Nocturnes, I decided to buy A Pale View of Hills for I would like to know what Kazuo Ishiguro's first novel was like.

As the previous books I read, his first novel did not betray my expectations. As his later published novels his writing is as subtle as ever and describes Etsuko's character so beatifully. Etsuko, a pre war born traditional Japnese woman currently residing in England recalls her one summer season in Nagasaki after the city was completely destroyed by atomic bomb and people were struggling so hard to rebuild their own life. Her first marriage there ended in failure. Then,she married an English again and went to England with her first born daughter, Keiko. However, Keiko killed herself for she could not adjust herself to the new living environment of England. Etsuko's husband died sometime ago too.

There are so many predicaments in her life and her soul must be so wounded. Ishiguro does not use exaggerating or dramatic expressions to describe inner most part of her mind, but his fine writing just fits to depict a typical Japanese woman of old generation who is outwardly docile but inwardly so firm and strong. Also, I feel there are many unspoken words between sentences leaving the readers feel whatever they want to feel. There is not a definite ending or direction in this story which I belive is a charm of Ishiguro's novel.

Although English is not my own native language, I enjoyed this book a great deal. Maybe because I am a Japanese woman.
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Location: Tokyo, Japan

Top Reviewer Ranking: 6,246,676