2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Not what I'd expected,
This review is from: Peony in Love (Paperback)
This is a really difficult book to review because it wasn't at all what I'd expected. The first third ran more or less true to form, following Peony as she prepares to turn 16 and leave her natal home to join a husband that she has never met. To commemorate a significant festival her father arranges a production of the epic opera The Peony Pavilion; an opera that Peony has read many times but never seen. Without giving too much away, this part of the book left me feeling frustrated and sad and although the book comes to a satisfying ending, it is not a cheerful tale.
From here on we are in the realms of the dead, interesting from the point of view of Chinese beliefs about the afterlife, but otherwise rather slow. Whilst I enjoyed Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold and A Place Called Here by Celia Ahern, Ms See's take on the afterworld did not enthrall me. The commentary on the opera and on Peony and her 'sister-wives' views on love and marriage were also hard going.
This book was based on historical fact but where it veered into the realms of imagination, for me, it veered a bit too far.
Worth a read but not a book I'd recommend.
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Initial post: 22 Nov 2012 15:22:44 GMT
Last edited by the author on 22 Nov 2012 15:23:03 GMT
Louise K says:
I just wanted to say that I really enjoyed the parts about the afterlife - the majority of the book and far from being slow I found it a real page turner and very insightful. I read Lovely Bones also and drew comparisons too; however, I really did not enjoy that book at all and found it very dull as well as depressing and badly written. Obviously people are somewhat different in how we receive the words of others which is actually quite interesting. I was interested to read your thoughts.
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