Friday, 11 May 2012

Friday Fiction 14/52: Burnt Shadows

Argh, this stupid book is annoying me, even though I finished it like a week ago! I really, really loved it, but the ending was so disappointing! It just ended, in what felt to me like the complete middle of the story. Everything was left so unfinished and I was so upset not to have a proper conclusion to such a great story and find out what happened to all of the wonderful characters in the end. Super frustrating. 

So really, my review face was a bit more like this...

Once I'd gotten over my 'WHAT?! THAT'S IT? THAT'S THE END?! THAT'S NOT AN ENDING' reaction anyway...

I tried to briefly summarise the story to Hubby - it starts in Japan, immediately prior to the dropping of the Hiroshima bomb, then one of the survivors moves to India and then she gets married and they visit Turkey before moving to Pakistan after Partition, and then there's a brief bit where her son goes to Afghanistan, and then the story moves to America post 9/11, but it goes back to Afghanistan briefly again - and he was understandably quite confused, because with each different location there's a different set of key characters, although they're all based around two central families. So it sounds completely mental, and all over the place, but it totally works. The story flows seamlessly, and you get enough continuity and back story to understand how they got to where they were and why the focus was on these characters now - and I found the back drop of war and conflict and the way different cultures deal with that to be really fascinating. Such an interesting book.

I've come to realise that I love reading books that are based overseas (particularly Asian culture), so I really enjoyed that aspect of it. I compared it before to the style of Khaled Hosseini and Kazuo Ishiguro, which I think still stands, minutely detailed but completely beautiful. Essentially it's an amazing story which is really fantastically written and very moving. I cried more than once. It's just shockingly let down by the ending! I'm genuinely upset that the ending was so bad, because I really wanted to be singing this books praises from the rooftops. Still, I'd easily give it an 8/10, because it was totally amazing.

Please tell me I'm not the only one who gets super mad at books for letting you down like this? Have you read this book? What did you think of the ending?

P.S. Goodreads tells me I'm 4 books behind schedule if I want to read 52 books this year, oops! I need to stop taking on such marathon reads and get cracking, don't I? My current Auster's pretty epic too (but dead good!).

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