Emily's Reviews > Empire of the Sun

Empire of the Sun by J.G. Ballard
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Feb 16, 08

bookshelves: my-very-very-favorites, novels

Don't let the Spielberg connection turn you off. This is a devastating slow burn of a book, one that I picked up fairly randomly, and have been reeling from ever since. The prose is scrupulously plain, but the psychological detail as strange and transporting as anything more self-consciously lyrical. It chronicles the author's childhood experiences as a prisoner-of-war in WWII Japan, but this isn't a typical novel-memoir; there's a traumatized shimmer to the third-person narration (there's no "I" here; just "Jim") and the lack of sentiment is unnerving and, strange to say, honorable. I really loved this book.
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