Melinda McLaughlin's Reviews > Video Night in Kathmandu and Other Reports from the Not-So-Far East

Video Night in Kathmandu and Other Reports from the Not-So-Fa... by Pico Iyer
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Jun 30, 09

Read in June, 2009

I read this book in preparing for a trip to Asia - also, my boyfriend happened to own it. It was interesting, but to me, it was more that it captured the 1980s in Asia, rather than delivered any ground-breaking insight into the culture. In may cases, it was almost as if Iyer saw what he wanted to see - a single-minded Chinese populace, an introspective and peaceful Burma, an efficiency-oriented Japan etc. He does point out some contrarian aspects of each culture, but the bulk of the writing seems to confirm stereotypes. However, I have yet to visit Asia (September!), so he may have been speaking the truth. I'll let you know. The writing itself was entertaining enough to keep me engaged though - clever, colorful, even sometimes a bit too much so. Overall, a quick amusing journey into a past Asia I'll never experience - supposedly, MUCH has changed.
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