This book is well written, has an excellent and consistently engaging plot and piles a few more layers of personality on the fictional portrait of Milo. While it does not, of course, have the behind-the-Wall Cold War ambiance of the author's books set in an unspecified Soviet Bloc country, the book brings its own lesser joys of time and place. The author's command of the China setting is not so masterly as is his knowledge of Soviet Bloc countries, perhaps expected inasmuch as he has not lived in China but has lived in a former Soviet Bloc nation.
The narrator is quite competent. My only complaint: the ending seemed to be tied up hastily with some all-too-convenient and not entirely satisfying twists.
Overall: certainly worthwhile. I just wish the author could find some means of defying chronology and writing a couple of more Soviet Bloc/1950's novels. But we must all move on, I suppose.
A summary of the premise for this book sounds a bit of a turn-off. Much of it occurs while JR rides in a car with three people, one of whom is essentially mute and the two others not chatty. However, the inner psychology of the work is sufficiently compelling to make this book not only different but quite good.
The highlight of Bazell's first novel was the hospital/medical context which as about the best parody since Chaevsky's Hospital. But this lame foray into the Midwest and monster hunting definitely misfired. Go back to the Bronx.
Report Inappropriate Content
If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.