The Copper Promise (The Copper Cat 01) by Jen Williams

I got this one from beautiful and clever Melfka – thank you!

Synopsis (from Goodreads):

There are some far-fetched rumours about the caverns beneath the Citadel…

Some say the mages left their most dangerous secrets hidden there; others, that great riches are hidden there; even that gods have been imprisoned in its darkest depths.

For Lord Frith, the caverns hold the key to his vengeance. Against all the odds, he has survived torture and lived to see his home and his family taken from him … and now someone is going to pay. For Wydrin of Crosshaven and her faithful companion, Sir Sebastian Caverson, a quest to the Citadel looks like just another job. There’s the promise of gold and adventure. Who knows, they might even have a decent tale or two once they’re done.

But sometimes there is truth in rumour.

Soon this reckless trio will be the last line of defence against a hungry, restless terror that wants to tear the world apart. And they’re not even getting paid.

My impressions:

Perhaps it’s only me but, despite a lot of potential in the blurb, this one left me completely disengaged. I cared neither for any of the characters nor for the plot, I could skip entire chapters without feeling I was missing something important. I got bored for the first time after merely 50 pages, imagine that. The plot seemed just washed-out repetition of so many other high fantasy novels. The magic didn’t leave me awed and anxious for more. The blue dragoness I noticed but only as an afterthought because she was kept in the background.

Maybe it was about the characterization, very schematic, barely there, a feature which could have been ripped from a D&D campaign module. Wydrin, the Copper Cat, had neither her own agenda nor many distinctive traits apart from her ginger colouring and a moniker. Sebastian, a valiant knight by her side, seemed blander than stones of the Citadel he was breaking into. Aaron, lord Firth, apart from his prematurely white mane of hair was just another wronged aristo looking for justice and revenge. Boring like hell.

Final verdict:

A DNF and a major meh. Felt like an homage to every hacky-slashy dungeon crawler RPG I’ve ever heard about. I won’t continue the series for sure.

Rating icon. A hairless cat is wearing a santa hat and a sour expression. On the hat reads: meh.

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Movie review: The Mummy (2017) directed by Alex Kurtzman

Product info:

Nick Morton (Tom Cruise) is a soldier of fortune who plunders ancient sites for timeless artifacts and sells them to the highest bidder. When Nick and his partner come under attack in the Middle East, the ensuing battle accidentally unearths Ahmanet (Sophia Boutella), a betrayed Egyptian princess who was entombed under the desert for thousands

of years. With her powers constantly evolving, Morton must now stop the resurrected monster as she embarks on a furious rampage through the streets of London.

My impressions:

I decided to watch the newest Mummy movie just for fun. I knew it would be probably a miss but I hoped for at least about one hundred minutes of innocent entertainment. After all, London is such a scenic venue…as is Iraq.

My thoughts after 16 minutes:

Set was the Egyptian god of evil? Or god of death for that matter? Seriously, dear scriptwriters?

Mummification alive according to Hollywood: you envelop a girl with bandages, you put her inside a wooden coffin and then you close her in a sarcophagus. Yeah…

Dear Tom Cruise, if you go to Iraq and want to pretend you’re a local (i.e. an Arab) you’d better grow a solid beard, not go around with your face smooth and shaved.

‘Haram’ in Arabic means ‘forbidden’ not ‘ treasure’.

Liquid mercury deposits cannot be found in Egypt – or in the whole Africa for that matter. How come the ancient Egyptians managed to gather a whole basin of it and transport it to Mesopotamia? A stupid question, right? Of course everything they needed had been brought by the movie crew…Can you notice the pattern? My brain refused to switch off, a prerequisite of enjoying such movies especially as they feature an old-ish Tom Cruise.  Who has to be the Chosen one no matter what.

Ok, 29- 68 minutes into the movie.

If you a real Egyptologist you’ll  ignore even a seriously ill, possibly dying man as long as you can examine an unknown sarcophagus lying nearby. To prove your total commitment all Egyptian inscriptions you’ll read aloud, translating them immediately into English.

The US Army fly carton-and-plastic toys which can disintegrate without any reason.

Now one asset of this flop – the best line was delivered by Russell Crowe and it went like this: “Come on, son. Mayhem, chaos, destruction. The ladies will love us.” What a pity there were no more of these.

Ahmanet might be a kick-ass princess and  devil incarnated but still she needs a mate. Badly. A man to support her with his strong arm. By the way, when did she have time to learn proper English?

Final verdict:

If, after watching a movie, you find out you had smiled just once and had been able to watch tv simultaneously and write a review on the side, the said movie was a waste of time.

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Tulip Fever by Deborah Moggach

Product info (from Goodreads):

A tale of art, beauty, lust, greed, deception and retribution — set in a refined society ablaze with tulip fever.

In 1630s Amsterdam, tulipomania has seized the populace. Everywhere men are seduced by the fantastic exotic flower. But for wealthy merchant Cornelis Sandvoort, it is his young and beautiful wife, Sophia, who stirs his soul. She is the prize he desires, the woman he hopes will bring him the joy that not even his considerable fortune can buy.

Cornelis yearns for an heir, but so far he and Sophia have failed to produce one. In a bid for immortality, he commissions a portrait of them both by the talented young painter Jan van Loos. But as Van Loos begins to capture Sophia’s likeness on canvas, a slow passion begins to burn between the beautiful young wife and the talented artist.

As the portrait unfolds, so a slow dance is begun among the household’s inhabitants. Ambitions, desires, and dreams breed a grand deception–and as the lies multiply, events move toward a thrilling and tragic climax.

My impressions:

There are bad books and bad books. The former ones are more or less redeemable; after all they’ve made you laugh once or twice, taught you something new or entertained you a bit. The latter cannot be forgiven. They failed in every respect even if they had promised you quite a lot. Unfortunately this book belongs to that second category. Why? Let me explain.

Self portrait by Jacob van Loo – http://www.rijksmuseum.nl : Home : Info : Pic, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=5972296

First of all, it is not a historical fiction novel. The 17th century Holland and the famous tulip speculation bubble appear only in a very distant background and are about as real as decorations in kids’ theatre. The same concern Flemish art and, more precisely, paintings by Jan van Loos (probably modelled after Jacob van Loo but who can be sure?). These are just props, unconvincing and completely unsatisfactory.

What is left? In short a bad romance – bad as in ‘stupid’ and ‘artificial’.

A girl meets a boy. The girl is, unfortunately, married and the boy is employed by her elderly, rich husband to paint the portrait of the ‘happy’ couple. Contrary to the blurb description, the boy and the girl fall in love INSTANTLY, like the very moment they see each other for the first time. You know I hate insta-love with a passion, right? Ok, glad to straighten it up, thank you very much for

A lady with naked tits…er…scratch that. Ariadne by Jacob van Loo. Courtesy of Wikipedia

your patience. Here, have a little pic of a

woman with naked breasts. A painting by Jacob van Loo of course so perfectly legit. She is ‘Ariadne’ if anybody asks.

Let’s return to the plot. The hubby is so stupid, naive, and unobservant that he knows nothing, nothing at all till it is way too late. How come such a slowpoke managed a lifelong, successful career as a Dutch merchant? I think it’s possible only in bad books. No matter; he plays with his beloved tulips and, meanwhile, his nubile wife is plotting with her artist boyfriend how to get rid of poor, old Cornelis. And she immediately proves that, when it comes to brains, she matches her husband to the dot.

UNMASKED SPOILER SECTION COMING YOUR WAY – PROGRESS AT YOUR OWN PERIL OR RUN FOR COVER

Jan and Sophia botch things  royally up by dabbling in tulip speculations (like every nitwit they find out that they need tons of money for their ‘clever’ little scheme) and sheltering Sophia’s pregnant servant, Maria, who has found out about them pretty soon and blackmailed her lady into helping her. Then, after several chapters of idiotic shenanigans, including but not limited to pretending she is giving birth to a child, Sophia decides to fake her own death and disappear, escaping both her husband and her lover. Wait, wasn’t she supposed to be so terribly in love with Johannes that she was simply sick? Wasn’t she supposed to escape with him to exotic, warm places with coconut water and sugar cane? She was, and yet… yeah, it is exactly that type of novel. It ends in a truly spectacular manner: Jan van Loos remains alone for the rest of his life, moping around poor thing, while his lovely Sophia, a Catholic, most likely has taken a veil. Why? Because the book had to end on a tragic note. HAD to.

Final verdict:

The Girl with a Pearl Earring by Tracy Chevalier seems to be a masterpiece when compared to this one. Not for me. I only hope the movie is going to be better. Meh.

Posted in book review, chicklit, historically-flavoured | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Away on holiday

Time to give you, dear Readers, Followers, and Lurkers, a much-deserved breather. This autumn I am going on a trekking trip to Corsica, a mountainous Mediterranean island belonging to France. When I return (so after two weeks or so) I promise to share my impressions :).

Meanwhile have fun!

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Kiss Me First by Lottie Moggach

Synopsis:

When Leila discovers the Web site Red Pill, she feels she has finally found people who understand her. A sheltered young woman raised by her mother, Leila has often struggled to connect with the girls at school; but on Red Pill, a chat forum for ethical and philosophical debate, Leila comes into her own, impressing the Web site’s founder, a brilliant and elusive man named Adrian. Leila is thrilled when Adrian asks to meet her, flattered when he invites her to be part of “Project Tess.”

Tess is a woman Leila might never have met in real life. She is beautiful, urbane, witty, and damaged. As they e-mail, chat, and Skype, Leila becomes enveloped in the world of Tess, learning every single thing she can about this other woman—because soon, Leila will have to become her. Tess wants to commit suicide but she doesn’t want the stigma clinging to her family so Leila’s task is to pretend she is her for some time after Tess’s death. Will it work?

My impressions:

I like thrillers that focus on dangers of the Internet but this one left me cold and rather disgruntled. Maybe because it often happens, with a debut novel.  Leila, oh Leila. How a girl who is supposed to be intelligent can be also simply too stupid to live on so many occasions? The premise was fine, full of really good topics like a debate about assisted suicide and its moral implications but I couldn’t get over Leila’s mistakes.

First of them: her infatuation with Adrian and then her crush on Connor. Adrian seemed creepy from the very start, at least to me; still Leila believed his every word was gospel even though she knew close to nothing about him, his aims, and background. And, what’s even stranger, she didn’t feel compelled to find out. It really sounded off because while preparing for her ‘Tess project’ Leila proved she could be a thorough, dedicated researcher.  Then she decided Connor, one of many former lovers of Tess, might be her kindred spirit and she progressed by flirting with him while pretending to be Tess. It was pretty ghoulish in itself but of course Leila had to add stupidity to that mix. Had she enquired about Connor’s situation in life? NOPE. What for? The guy was perfect for her, had the right sense of humour, what else could you demand? And then came the big, teary scene when Leila had to face the truth and I couldn’t muster one ounce of sympathy, not really.

Let’s face it: Leila was not a perfect character. She wasn’t likeable and hardly a relatable one, flat and grey, rather cold and pretty undeveloped when it comes to feelings and emotions. Mind you she was the narrator. Around her you find other people – and these aren’t nice either, selfish, lecherous, self-centered and greedy, almost all of them. I think the plot drowned in that unpleasantness after some time.

Final verdict:

While I liked the premise of this one the execution left me disappointed. It’s a pity, it could have been a really good book. Meh. By the way the cover I find pretty meh too and the title doesn’t fit the content but these are minor problems.

Rating icon. A hairless cat is wearing a santa hat and a sour expression. On the hat reads: meh.

Posted in book review, chicklit, contemporary, crime | Tagged , , , , , | 6 Comments

The Root of His Evil by James M. Cain

Synopsis (from Goodreads):

While slinging hash in a diner, a would-be Cinderella meets her Prince Charming.

Carrie Selden is not at all like the woman you’ve read about in the papers. Though she was raised in an orphanage, she isn’t an orphan. She didn’t finish high school until she was nineteen, but that was because she was working as a waitress, not because she was slow. And though she’s very cunning, well, she’s no femme fatale. But her beauty . . . oh yes, her beauty is everything you’ve heard.

At twenty-one, she takes her savings and moves to New York City, landing a job at a diner called Karb’s, at the bottom rung of the restaurant chain’s tall corporate ladder. Though she makes minimum wage, Carrie is savvy, and it isn’t long before she starts to climb. When her coworkers unionize, they choose her as president, and from there, the sky is the limit. But just as the union gets underway, she meets a mysterious intellectual named Grant—who will either help her rise to the top, or drag her straight down to hell.

My impressions:

This beginning-of-the-twentieth- century retelling of the story of Cinderella had it all what it takes to be charming: a heroine with a lot of gumption and brains, a handsome prince with a nearly-fatal flaw, his mother, beautiful but nasty like a viper, and a treacherous friend of our Cindy. The tale starts off where classic fairy tales end – with the marriage.  Carrie Selden, a young New York waitress, meets Grant Harris while serving his drink. One look or two, a short conversation, a walk and a sailing trip and they get married. Only after the marriage Carrie finds out who her husband is: a heir of a railroad billions fortune obsessed with Indians. That man comes along burdened with a snobby family and a possessive, beautiful mother he is besotted with. Soon nobody is giving Carrie any chance to keep him but she is stubborn and wants the man she likes. Still she will have to turn into a princess-warrior in order to conquer the mother-in-law dragoness breathing down her neck.

I liked characterization and some scenes, especially those which featured Carrie dealing with the family of her husband. The first meeting with his sisters was precious! I didn’t like the way Carrie treated Holden and that cover art which shows a hussy, not a waitress. I have to say most of plot twists were quite predictable. Still I enjoyed that story immensely – now I want to read more of this author!

Final verdict:

A novel as charming as its last chapter which I quote below:

“Tomorrow, Grant says, we start a perfectly hellish life, with mosquitoes, snakes, heat and everything else to bother us, and I guess it will be hard. But tonight there will be the Caribbean moon, and as it dances across the water, I shall think of the Modern Cinderella, and pretend that the light on the waves is really the silver slipper falling into her lap.”

Encore!

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Movie review: Queen (2014) by Vikas Bahl

I found out about that one while perusing Tasha/Heidenkind’s excellent blog, Truth, Beauty, Freedom, and Books – thank you my dear for mentioning it!

Product info:

A young New Delhi woman called Rani (‘Queen’ in English) comes from a very traditional but loving family. She and her entire family are preparing for her wedding when the fiance all of a sudden announces that he doesn’t want to marry after all. He doesn’t even present any viable reason, just says that in his opinion it would be for the best. Devastated Rani sulks for a day or two in her room and then, supported by her grandma, decides to go on a solo

honeymoon to Paris and Amsterdam, a trip she was dreaming about. Will she manage to overcome her trauma and return to her family happier? How will she deal with the outside world completely on her own?

My impressions:

At first glance this Bollywood comedy/drama had everything you need to spend two satisfying hours in front of your TV set/computer screen, drinking wine and chuckling merrily from time to time. A young ingenue, sweet and sensibly exotic, who slowly gains her independence. A scenic European tour, exposing clashes between European and Indian cultures. An alpha-hole fiance who thinks the Moon and stars revolve around his head and is taught a lesson. All of it was supposed to make me nod or even swing my head and smile most of the time. It left me bored instead, bored and annoyed.

Rani Mehra (Kangana Ranaut), an under-confident daughter of a shopkeeper, is ditched almost at the altar. The whole process should have been like a thunder but it takes almost half an hour in the movie.  I know Indian movies have their own rules and pace but, in my humble opinion, many scenes of this one should have been shortened or cut out completely. I felt as if the director repeated some ideas over and over again because he thought I might be as obtuse as the heroine of this flick. Which directs me toward my biggest complain. Rani.

I get it – she was a young, shy, sheltered girl, not especially educated, without any higher interests apart from marriage and, perhaps, cooking. A good girl who loves her family, listens to her teachers, does as she is told, and has a FB profile. It would still be fine if only Rani, while traveling abroad, showed any interest in Europe, French cuisine and/or history, Dutch cuisine and/or history or, in fact, any other related topic. No such luck. For her an exciting experience means getting sozzled in public, preferably while not wearing a bra in a disco, and being almost arrested by a local cop; yes, she loves cooking but French cuisine means just a disgusting bit of raw fish head with a small tomato in its prominent teeth, a ‘dish’ served, allegedly, in the only French restaurant she visited at a whim. Something that made her puke. It was obvious she thought they had it all in New Dehli, only they made it wayyyyy better. She also never bothered with even most superficial research concerning France, Paris, Amsterdam and Europe, even though her FB profile and discussions with her family on Skype suggested she had to have some previous knowledge about the internet and computers.

What interests Rani in Paris the most? La Tour Eiffel of course. What not to like? It’s high, made of metal, widely known, and it sparks in the dark admirably. What interests Rani in Amsterdam the most? A church and the Kink Kong chainstore where she, in all her annoyingly fake innocence, buys gifts for her whole family paying with a visa card of her papa. Funny? Somehow I didn’t smile even once. I simply didn’t buy it and couldn’t believe a girl, even young, shy, sheltered, and living in India can be also that stupid…

I admit I liked the ending the most as, for a change, Rani didn’t find the love of her life but it was a tad too little and a bit too late too.

Final verdict:

After seeing how many prizes this one won I expected something better. Perhaps Bollywood, their sweet-sweet heroines, repetitive music, and simplistic stories are not for me. Plus Paris without catacombs is not the right kind of Paris.

Posted in Bollywood comedy drama, meh, movie review, rating | Tagged , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Azincourt by Bernard Cornwell

Synopsis (from Goodreads):

Agincourt is one of the epic battles of history. It was fought by two badly matched armies that met in atrocious conditions on St Crispin’s Day 1415, and resulted in an extraordinary victory that was celebrated in England long before Shakespeare immortalised it in Henry V. It has always been held to be the triumph of the longbow against the armoured knight, and of the common man against the feudal aristocrat, but those are history’s myths. Bernard Cornwell, who has long wanted to write this story, depicts the reality behind the myths.

Nicholas Hook is an English archer. He seems born to trouble and, when his lord orders him to London as part of a force sent to quell an expected Lollard uprising, Nick’s headstrong behaviour leads to him being proscribed an outlaw. He finds refuge across the Channel, part of an English mercenary force protecting the town of Soissons against the French. What happened at the Siege of Soissons shocked all Europe, and propels Nick back to England where he is enrolled in the archer companyof the doughty Sir John Cornwaille, a leader of Henry V’s army. The army was superb, but sickness and the unexpected French defiance at Harfleur, reduce it to near-shambolic condition. Henry stubbornly refuses to accept defeat and, in appalling weather, leads his shrunken force to what appears to be inevitable disaster.

My impressions:

I saw this book being recommended by many people so, looking for good his-fic, I decided to give it a chance. It wasn’t a bad novel, far from it, but I got a feeling the author, for a reason or two, stopped mid-way between something mediocre and something truly brilliant.

On the one hand you get Nick Hook, a protagonist which could have been really good – well-rounded, properly complex, defying simple pigeon-holing. Could have been. The idea behind that character was great but then the action overtook all attempts at making Nick an interesting man to follow. Near the end of the book Nick turned into another bland puppet archer who was supposed to take part in the battle at Azincourt and survive it to tell tales. The same can be said about Henry V, his sovereign. There were several moments when I said to myself: “oh, great, the English king will be good!” and then, somehow, that character fizzled out into nothing. It was never explained properly why that king condemned his own subjects, the lollards, to death but was so very valiant facing the people from Harfleur. The author didn’t even try to touch the strange religious devotion of Henry, full of many delightful contradictions definitely worth exploring.

Finally don’t let me even start to carp about Monsieur de Lanfernelle, the gorgeous father of the divine Melisande,  who was just ludicrously artificial, a character composed of most obvious cliches, or the provenience of ‘voices’ Nick heard in his head.

I also have to admit the ending dragged and dragged forever but I have to add that the battle scenes, although gory and gross, were done very well.

Final verdict:

It could have been a really good book but it is a firm ‘meh’. Pity.

Rating icon. A hairless cat is wearing a santa hat and a sour expression. On the hat reads: meh.

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Movie review: Magellan (2017) directed by Rob York

Product info:

After NASA picks up a trio of mysterious signals from within our own solar system, astronaut Roger Nelson (Brandon Ray Olive) is dispatched on a multi-year solo mission aboard the Magellan spacecraft to investigate the sources.

My impressions:

It wasn’t a bad movie, maybe a tiny bit boring from time to time but not bad at all. Still the whole premise seemed completely unbelievable to me. How come NASA sent just ONE man on a super-important, super-complicated mission, difficult on more than one level, a mission which can be a spectacular success but also a big, fat disaster? One man, even the best professional around, can make a mistake. Something might happen completely beyond his control. What if he falls ill? What if he has a stupid accident? What if, in a moment of weakness, he takes one bad decision too many? He is supposed to spend ten long years in space, most of the time in hibernation. What if the equipment fails? What if, what if…

The fact that the said astronaut has to leave his wife Abigail (Whitney Palmer) behind was, in my humble opinion, another stupid plot device. I know, I know, it was done deliberately to create tension and those lachrymose moments viewers love so much because it is clear from the very beginning that Roger and Abigail love each other very deeply. It goes without saying that a decade is a very long time to stay apart from each other, especially that the odds are against him ever returning safely. As they have no kids I ask: why NASA directors didn’t send them together? After all even the rival Chinese had a crew of three…

Yeah, I know, the answer is another cliche cherished by American cinema (but not only) – people love a lone hero who is saving the town, the country or even the whole planet all on his own. Getting mad in the process because he is all on his own and even the smartest A.I. computer cannot replace human company. I like sci-fi movies but I admit such a solution took a shine out of this one.

Final verdict:

Meh. Just meh. Watch it at home if you cannot help it but you’ve been warned, it is not as clever as it sounds.

Rating icon. A hairless cat is wearing a santa hat and a sour expression. On the hat reads: meh.

 

Posted in drama, meh, movie review, rating, sci-fi | Tagged , , , , | 6 Comments

The Yiddish Policemen’s Union by Michael Chabon

Synopsis (from Goodreads):

For sixty years, Jewish refugees and their descendants have prospered in the Federal District of Sitka, a “temporary” safe haven created in the wake of revelations of the Holocaust and the shocking 1948 collapse of the fledgling state of Israel. 

Proud, grateful, and longing to be American, the Jews of the Sitka District have created their own little world in the Alaskan panhandle, a vibrant, gritty, soulful, and complex frontier city that moves to the music of Yiddish. For sixty years they have been left alone, neglected and half-forgotten in a backwater of history. Now the District is set to revert to Alaskan control, and their dream is coming to an end: once again the tides of history threaten to sweep them up and carry them off into the unknown.

But homicide detective Meyer Landsman of the District Police has enough problems without worrying about the upcoming Reversion. His life is a shambles, his marriage a wreck, his career a disaster. He and his half-Tlingit partner, Berko Shemets, can’t catch a break in any of their outstanding cases. Landsman’s new supervisor is the love of his life—and also his worst nightmare. And in the cheap hotel where he has washed up, someone has just committed a murder—right under Landsman’s nose. A way to spend the last months of your peaceful American dream, right?

My impressions:

Have I ever mentioned that I am fully prepared to forgive a book a lot if the narration features the right sense of humour? Well, this is a perfect example.

Apparently the premise of The Yiddish Policemen’s Union is anything but original – I am the first to admit it. It starts in a fictional state of Alaska, a temporary home of the Jewish Diaspora, with a murder of a young drug addict committed in a sad, run-down hotel. A heavily drinking, depressed cop staying in the same fleabag hotel is called in. That cop, Meyer Landsman, will try his best to solve the case, perhaps the last case in his career or, indeed, life. He feels he owes that much to the unknown companion of his misery. The investigation will put him in contact with a fundamentalist Jewish mafia boss, a failed Messiah, the so-called tzaddik ha-Dor and his ex-wife, among many others.

Nothing original, right? And yet I couldn’t stop reading and was chuckling every two-three pages, sometimes laughing out loud like a mad hag.

Yes, it is a dystopia with terminally flawed characters and a lot of violence, very noir at times. Yes, the title hardly reflects the content. Yes, the author has an annoying tendency to ask different political questions in the middle of things (like what would happen if Zionists had botched things in Israel and instead found themselves in Alaska, disputing land with Native Americans, dreaming up terrorist plots to win back the holy land?).  Yes, Chabon’s descriptive language and inventive style might distract you sometimes from the plot. No, the book doesn’t pass the Bechdel test although it features some well-rounded, warm-blooded female characters, Bina Gelbfish-Landsman, the ex-wife of our detective and a police officer, among them. Yes, magical/supernatural elements are barely there and I don’t think the novel can be qualified as a sci-fi position, not really. And yet I recommend it wholeheartedly, especially if you need a laugh or two and you appreciate the darker sense of humour.

Final verdict:

Finally: one brilliant book – the first this year I suppose.

It grabbed me and would not let me go until it won me over. In order to provide the last Rating icon with the words "one brilliant book" and a small butterfly on it.argument let me quote one of more delightful dialogues (between Landsman and an Indian doctor examining him):

p.278

‘Are you taking medication?’
‘No, not really.’
‘Not really?’
‘No, I don’t want to.’
‘You don’t want to.’
‘I’m, you know. Afraid I might lose my edge.’
‘That explains the drinking, then,’ the doctor says. His words seem tinged with a sardonic wiff of liquorice. ‘I hear it does wonders for one’s edge.’ He goes to the door, opens it, and an Indian noz comes in to take Landsman away. ‘In my experience, Detective Landsman, if I may,’ the doctor concludes his own jag, ‘the people who worry about losing their edge, often they fail to see they already lost the blade a long time ago.’

Other books by Michael Chabon reviewed on this blog:

The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay

 

Posted in alternate history, book review, contemporary, crime, dystopia, one brilliant book, rating | Tagged , , , , , , | 8 Comments