Kasa Cotugno's Reviews > The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet

The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet by David Mitchell
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's review
Apr 20, 2010

it was amazing
bookshelves: arc, genre-history, location-asia-japan

David Mitchell's first book in over four years is a revelation, not because he utilizes his trademark leaps of imagination as in Ghostwritten or Cloud Atlas, but because he produces a monumental departure, a satisfying historical novel of depth and adventure. Once you pick one of his books up, it is hard to do anything else, you are hooked.

In Nagasaki, in 1799, Jacob de Zoet is a newly arrived clerk of the Dutch East India Company centralized on Dijeema, a man-made island built on piers in the harbor. Through Jacob's eyes, we witness the end of an era, the beginning of another. This world jumps to life through Mitchell's poetic imagery, meticulous research, extraordinary craft as a storyteller. Jacob disappears from the pages in Part II, which unfolds with the drama and force of a Kurosawa samurai epic, featuring a heroine of remarkable fortitude, resourcefulness and character. To tell more of the plot would spoil the surprises, suspense and development. I'll only add that it is beautifully written, thoroughly engrossing, and proof that David Mitchell is capable of anything.
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Comments (showing 1-3 of 3) (3 new)

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message 1: by Carole (new) - added it

Carole I must be tired...am having hard time with this one. Both you and Gilda loved it so I will give it another chance when not so tired.

Kasa Cotugno Reading is so subjective, and timing can definitely be a factor. I've gone back to books that didn't grab me, and sometimes they "took," sometimes, not. If you're interested in this author, Black Swan Green was more of a grabber.

message 3: by Carole (new) - added it

Carole Thanks. I may try it.

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