Nilesh's Reviews > The Orphan Master's Son

The Orphan Master's Son by Adam Johnson
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's review
Apr 13, 12

bookshelves: good-fiction

The strongest message from the book is that the world we live in or the reality we believe in is nothing but what we get accustomed to.

The book is about an alien land, its strange ways, ghastly lifestyle and normal human beings. Many of the events described would have been downright funny if they were not so heinous (particularly the scenes involving Kim Jong Il that are out and out uproarious). The entire world described is surreal and bizzare. The tragedy that pervades the book adequately reflects the plight affecting the slavish citizens of the society described. The book vividly describes what motivates, scares, drives these people and how the make-belief world around them shapes their thoughts. The propaganda machine that appears comical at the beginning turns credible soon after when the reader is made to realize how incredible the world we call our world is to the characters of the story.

The only downside is that the book refuses to provide unqualified relief to any of its protagonists at any point. Even the most downtrodden of the material world have their own happy moments. Dark, gloomy shadows are projected even during the sporadic intimate scenes in the book. The book desperately needed some more truly positive, uplifting events, even if not a genuine happy ending.

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