Regular price: $24.95
Buy Now with 1 Credit
Buy Now for $24.95
I bought this book in spite of the bad reviews and hey, was I glad I did. I can see why it won the Hugo. It is a wonderfully drawn portrait of a Chinese American who comes "home" to Taiwan and finds himself a stranger in a strange land. The characters were all kooky, colourful and fully drawn, made even more delightful by the wonderful narrator, James Chen. A bravura performance which I am glad I did not miss. Did I mention that it is suspenceful and an interesting take on Taiwan? Highly recommended.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful
I'm giving this 4 stars. In terms of narrative it's a bit flawed (who's perfect?) but for me there is a lot of interest in the main character and his experience of return to Taiwan as a "foreigner". Some nice observations on Taiwan, and also on Asian-American identity. One thing that annoyed me a little was one of the characters' tirades against a white American who has "gone native" in Taiwan, since I got a bit of an impression that this reflects the author's own feelings. So, what, white Americans are not meant to go to Asia? Or if they do they should remain superficial tourists? Why is it possible for an Asian migrant to the US to have an authentic hyphenated identity but impossible for a white expatriate in Asia to establish the same thing? Sure, these are somewhat different propositions, but come on, Francie, cultural belonging is flexible and negotiable, isn't it? For me this issue is seen through a bit of a crude orientalist lens. That gripe apart, I found lots to like here.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful