29 May, 2012

When We Were Orphans

Title: When We Were Orphans
Author: Kazuo Ishiguro
Genre: Fiction
Audience: Adult
Format: Book - library

From Goodreads: Christopher Banks, the protagonist of Kazuo Ishiguro's fifth novel, When We Were Orphans, has dedicated his life to detective work but behind his successes lies one unsolved mystery: the disappearance of his parents when he was a small boy living in the International Settlement in Shanghai. Moving between England and China in the inter-war period, the book, encompassing the turbulence and political anxieties of the time and the crumbling certainties of a Britain deeply involved in the opium trade in the East, centres on Banks's idealistic need to make sense of the world through the small victories of detection and his need to understand finally what happened to his mother and father.

What I thought: I've been a little hesitant about reading any more Ishiguro since I was complete unable to get anywhere with The Unconsoled. This however was very different. I do find it hard to review Ishiguro's books because I feel so much of what I read goes above my head, but what I do love is the rich world he creates. Everything in this book seems exaggerated, brighter or duller than it would be real life, the characters larger than life and their experiences more significant. Whether I truly "get" these books becomes irrelevant as I am able to lose myself in beautiful language and a rich atmosphere.

Challenges: Library Challenge