Dec 9, 2009

Re-read Your Favorite Books: The Flashback Challenge

The Flashback Challenge to re-read three or more of your favorite books will run from January 1, 2010 - December 31, 2010. There are three levels of participation: Bookworm - Up to three books
Scholar - Four to six books  Literati - Over six books. Started by Aatri of Book Lust, sign up at Flashback Challenge.I found the challenge at mel u's blog, Rereading Lives.

This gives me an incentive to re-read a book I have wanted to look at again, When We Were Orphans: A Novel by Kazuo Ishiguro. Set in England and Shanghai during the 1930s, it's about a young English detective with a faulty memory who returns to wartime Shanghai in 1937 to find his parents who had disappeared there years ago when he was about nine years old. As he is an unreliable narrator, readers have to figure out the puzzle of his past and become detectives themselves to decide what is fact and what is fiction. Christopher meets a Japanese soldier in Shanghai who may or may not be his playmate from years ago. How Christopher reacts or doesn't react to him and to Shanghai during the Japanese occupation is part of his strange, delusional persona. This book intrigued me so much, I want to try again to get the hard facts about Christopher's past, which may not be possible, given his confused and inaccurate memory.

Ishiguro, born in Nagasaki, Japan and now living in London, is also author of The Remains of the Day, a Booker Prize-winning novel made into the award winning film with Anthony Hopkins.

Update: My number two book for this challenge will be Out by Natsuo Kirino, 2003. My memory of the book was jogged by the excellent review posted by mel u on his blog.
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  1. The only Ishiguro book that I've read is Remains of the Day. I know I should try more of his writing - I think I'd probably like it.

  2. I have yet to read an Ishiguro book-maybe I will be now motivated by your very good review to read one on 2010

  3. Yay! I'm so glad you are participating! And I have always wanted to read more Ishiguro. I love both books of his I've read. He has such sparse, gorgeous writing.

  4. I still haven't read any of Ishiguro's works but really want to read a lot of them! I just couldn't find a good copy of his books yet :(

  5. Mark David: I had two copies of When We Were Orphans, but sent one to my son in Japan, otherwise I could have sent one to you in Manila. I only hope he's reading it! I know you would have!

  6. Oh that's so nice of you Harvee! But it's ok, I'm sure I'll be seeing his books soon as I've been bugging the stores to get copies for some time now. We actually have the hardcover edition of Noctures (the one with the beautiful white, snowy cover) here but I'm still considering if I'd buy that or wait for the paperback because the hardcover's a little big :)


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