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Customer Review

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Very unnatural imagery., 24 Oct. 2013
This review is from: The Spy Lover (Paperback)
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After only a couple of chapters , I had already had enough. The author's attempts to describe dire scenes were so incredible that I could not help but find them humorous. It was as if Stephen Spielberg had written a sceenplay for Troma Studios: a festival of schmaltz and gore.

There is a Chinese family that comes from a village in a swamp area, in the valley of the might Yellow River, but there is no water. No-one in the village can make fire. I am not sure whether it is meant to be a parasitic worm or a woman's own intestines that are pulled out of a woman and shared among the villagers to eat. Whatever it is, it should not have eyes and a head the size of a man's thumb.

We are asked to believe that soldiers are deliberately risking their own lives by fermenting the bodies of dead prisoners, not to mention ignoring the putrid stench.

Valuable gasoline is squandered in an extravagant vile execution of a spy.

One of the oddest early descriptions is " ... buzzards in the distance swooning over corpses of horses and mules." Perhaps swooning means something quite different in America.

The prose style is semi-poetic, which makes it much more of an effort to digest. The writer further complicates by jolting between past and present, and North and South.

Identifying with the characters I found to be quite impossible.

The stories do at least make steady progress: I can say nothing more positive than that.
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Location: Birmingham UK

Top Reviewer Ranking: 78,732