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Re: Having read this review, I have a question... Camilla Send a noteboard - 13/02/2012 03:45:35 PM
I have two of them, actually.

While you've told me about the story, I you did not mention, in any real way, your reaction to the story.

1. Did you enjoy this novel?


I did. I thought that would be obvious from my review.

We have, over the course of some little while now, propped up the name and reputation of Harkaway and his first novel. You mentioned that had 'equal parts terror and giddy enthusiasm.' You only mentioned that the book isn't a copy of the fist.


Propped up?

2. How does this novel compare to the first? Does it live up to expectations?


I tried to avoid making the review a comparative study. Perhaps I tried too hard.

On the whole, yes, it lives up to expectations. I prefer The Gone-Away World, but I think that is due to my latching on to particular things (like soft style martial arts) and having trouble letting go.

I also think The Gone-Away World had a more unified ... direction (although that may seem like a strange way of describing that book): the British detective story is different from the American (Doyle vs Chandler), and while it may seem like an odd way of characterising them, I think I would place TGAW in the former camp and this in the latter. But that analogy depends to a large extent of you understanding how my brain works, and may be a lost case. While this novel also brings strings together in the end, there is no big reveal of the TGAW type (rather, several smaller reveals along the way).

This book is also more obviously political than the first (while I will maintain that TGAW is VERY political, it was perhaps less overt, and less explicitly tied to current political events). I don't think either of these points are a matter of better or worse, but rather different.

It also has some very different formal characteristics. TGAW was a first person narration tied to a particular voice and presenting a fairly linear development of a life (albeit with the complications you know of). This book has a much more complicated structure in that way (different perspectives, jumps backwards and forwards in time in a way which allows the meaning of events to become apparent in between the development of the "present" story), but because it is a move away from the surprising ending, it may not feel like that.

I know I said it was different, then went on to use almost the very same words to describe this new book: that is due to a continuity in thematic concerns, which I find fascinating (and a similarity in style).

Does that answer your question?
*MySmiley*
structured procrastinator
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So... this Harkaway dude... any good? *NM* - 12/02/2012 08:08:29 PM 1001 Views
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Re: Having read this review, I have a question... - 13/02/2012 03:45:35 PM 1475 Views
Thank you. - 13/02/2012 06:27:20 PM 1818 Views
I am going to use this, because I don't feel like reviewing. - 14/02/2012 06:44:08 AM 1765 Views
I picked it up the other day - 13/02/2012 03:37:00 PM 1365 Views
Re: I picked it up the other day - 13/02/2012 03:48:32 PM 1324 Views
Oh, Book Collections are never a problem - 14/02/2012 11:38:14 AM 1362 Views
Turn away a free copy? - 14/02/2012 06:48:12 AM 1378 Views
It sounds really interesting Camilla - 14/02/2012 02:16:39 AM 1500 Views
Re: It sounds really interesting Camilla - 14/02/2012 07:26:02 AM 1458 Views
No Nook Book until 3-20? Moved to the bottom of the list. *NM* - 14/02/2012 04:41:04 AM 905 Views
Question about the US edition dust jacket code. - 17/04/2012 03:53:55 AM 1248 Views

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