Bloody brilliant - re read after a 20 year gap after GR peer group pressure and upgraded from 3 to 5 stars. Pleased to find memory of goldfish so reme...moreBloody brilliant - re read after a 20 year gap after GR peer group pressure and upgraded from 3 to 5 stars. Pleased to find memory of goldfish so remembered almost nothing from previous read and that had seriously done an injustice with previous rating,
The writing isnt always frist class but at the same time Clavell perfectly encaptures the delicacies of the Samurai code of honour and Japanese life at that time. Its gruesome and bloody and coarse but the plots and counter plots and intrigues keep you on the edge of your reading chair the whole way through. And you change with Anjin-san as you get to know the Japanese better and your standpoint on who are the more barbaric changes the more you read on. Mariko-San became one of my favourite literary heroines. Im not usually one for war novels but there was so much more to this and i loved never knowing whos side anyone was on and wondering what the next carrier pidgeon would bring. The mind boggles at how many seppukus and decapitations and gruesome deaths happened throughout the book but you have to admire the sense of honour and duty and commitment to their cause that these characters had.
Theres even some philosophy in there..i found myself trying to imagine rocks growing while trying to struggle through christmas shopping hoardes of people without hitting someone!
Loved it, The language was breathtaking at times. Not a fast read, it seemed to take forever to do 500p, but so worth it though. Great to have a feist...moreLoved it, The language was breathtaking at times. Not a fast read, it seemed to take forever to do 500p, but so worth it though. Great to have a feisty strong willed yet humble and socially sound female lead in a Victorian novel. Why didnt i get into classics earlier?! (less)
Im not going to rate it - it wouldnt be fair, i just dont think i was in the right frame of mind for the work involved and didnt persevere. slopes off...moreIm not going to rate it - it wouldnt be fair, i just dont think i was in the right frame of mind for the work involved and didnt persevere. slopes off guiltily knowing probably missing something amazing and being a fully fledged book-snob. When so many people tell you its better the third time around, you think to yourself ..theres so much else for me to get stuck into i havnt got the patience for a first time let alone a third. psst - i only picked it cos i liked the title.(less)
Cutting commentary on morals and 19th Century class system, hypocracy and society by a man infamous for his own fall from grace
What i liked about it Wi...moreCutting commentary on morals and 19th Century class system, hypocracy and society by a man infamous for his own fall from grace
What i liked about it Wildes Acerbic Wit - theres so many lines you would have heard before - "Theres only one thing worse than being talked about and that not being talked about" for example. Hes at his best commenting on social situations and society in general. Theres some great cameo characterisation, Great Ladies and eccentric Duchesses. Plenty to make you smile and admire Wildes brilliance. I really had no idea of the plot before reading amazingly enough - quite an interesting concept. I really wasnt prepared for the Macabre Gothing Horror story it turned into - that took me by surprise a bit, it made a nice change from dinner party conversation after dinner party conversation.
What I didnt like Wildes Acerbic Wit - you can have too much of a good thing. You can only take so much of Lord Henryisms page after page, no matter how witty. The prose is overly descriptive, nice at times, but does he have to describe in infitate detail every single piece of luxurious furnishings. Overkill. Almost without exception all the main characters are thoroughly dislikable - wicked and horridly snobbish, whether it was satire or not i dont know but they didnt give a hoot for anything that happened to anyone not of their rank.(less)
Despite abandoning for six months after tiring a of the middle where its a bit slow and Londons a bit miserable, I returned to it in my Christmas cott...moreDespite abandoning for six months after tiring a of the middle where its a bit slow and Londons a bit miserable, I returned to it in my Christmas cottage in the countryside. It seemed very fitting for a wintery read in a village. I really did enjoy it again by the end. Though the end itself is quite sad and a bit disappointing in some ways...or is it... re reads last scentence again..
I love Joe Gargery, what a lovely bloke, love his dialogue. Theres lots of good character dialogue actually.
Im sure ill return to another Dickes at some point. This was an improvement on Tale of Two Cities(less)
"Death is always on the way, but the fact that you don't know when it will arrive seems to take away from the finit...moreStunning, How is this for profound,
"Death is always on the way, but the fact that you don't know when it will arrive seems to take away from the finiteness of life. It's that terrible precision that we hate so much. But because we don't know, we get to think of life as an inexhaustible well. Yet everything happens a certain number of times, and a very small number, really. How many more times will you remember a certain afternoon of your childhood, some afternoon that's so deeply a part of your being that you can't even conceive of your life without it? Perhaps four or five times more. Perhaps not even. How many more times will you watch the full moon rise? Perhaps twenty. And yet it all seems limitless." — Paul Bowles (The Sheltering Sky) (less)