Kars's Reviews > Empire of the Sun

Empire of the Sun by J.G. Ballard
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it was amazing
bookshelves: fiction, history, war

"Unlike the war in China, everyone in Europe clearly knew which side he was on, a problem that Jim had never really solved. Despite all the new names that it had spawned, was the war recharging itself here by the great rivers of eastern Asia, to be fought forever in that far more ambiguous language that Jim had begun to learn?"


Having read quite a bit of Ballard's sci-fi, I was surprised to find this wartime memoir to be the rosetta stone for understanding his oeuvre. The horrors he experienced during the sudden collapse of Shanghai are echoed in all of his works. This is some of the crispest prose I've read by him anywhere. The imagery is often so grotesque it is hard to believe he went through this all and came out alive and relatively sane. An absolute essential read.
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Reading Progress

January 8, 2018 – Shelved
January 8, 2018 – Shelved as: to-read
January 8, 2018 – Shelved as: fiction
January 8, 2018 – Shelved as: history
January 8, 2018 – Shelved as: war
January 17, 2018 – Started Reading
January 17, 2018 –
1.0%
January 19, 2018 –
9.0%
January 21, 2018 –
25.0%
February 4, 2018 –
62.0%
February 17, 2018 –
91.0%
February 22, 2018 – Finished Reading

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