Jeff Jackson's Reviews > The Last Samurai

The Last Samurai by Helen DeWitt
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's review
Jul 29, 2011

really liked it
Read in April, 2012

4.5 stars. Many others have written passionately and eloquently about this wonderful book, so just a few quick observations:
-Contains one of the great piano recital scenes in all literature (alongside Berthe Trepat's concert in 'Hopscotch')
-Doesn't go as deep into Kurosawa's 'The Seven Samurai' as I expected, but still makes a great double bill after reading the novel
-Doesn't feel nearly as long as its daunting 500+ page count due to numerous short sections, blank spaces, and of course engaging storyline
-Swaps narrators halfway through the book, but this is done with such ease and skill that the radical shift merely feels inevitable
-Apparently Tom Cruise plays Ludo in the Hollywood movie version. Seems like a stretch, though he is awful short.
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08/17/2016 marked as: read

Comments (showing 1-4 of 4) (4 new)

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David Katzman I loved this book.

message 2: by Mike (last edited Apr 27, 2012 06:45AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Mike Puma Loved it as well, much more so than her more Lightning Rods

Jeff Jackson Mike - I heard something about her new one being totally different. Is that right? Apparently she was told to write a few less ambitious novels and then try to get 'The Last Samurai' published. I think maybe 'Lightning Rods' was one of those. Thankfully Samurai slipped past the publishing gatekeepers first.

Mike Puma If I recall correctly, and there's no reason to think I do, this book is actually as old as TLS; it's just taken this long to be published.

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