Jun 20, 2010

Sunday Salon: A Book and a Half

The Sunday Salon.com

Welcome to the Sunday Salon!

Whiter Than SnowThree more days to enter the contest for Whiter than Snow by Sandra Dallas, thanks to the Book Report Network.
Here's the link: Book Give-Away

I managed only a book and a half last week. It's been hectic.
I reviewed the galley of The Queen of Patpong: A Poke Rafferty Thriller by Timothy Hallinan, a first-rate suspense novel set in Bangkok that will be out in August. Here's the review.

I'm half-way through The Time Of The Dragons by Alice Ekert Rotholz, translated from the German, set in Asia before and during the Japanese occupation of Shanghai and the countries of Southeast Asia. I had mentioned in an earlier post that I  wanted to see a German perspective of the war in Asia. Here's what I wrote on the post of a blogger who reviewed the book:

"I'm half way through the book, printed in 1958 by Viking Press. Really interesting novel about a Norwegian consul in Shanghai in the mid-1920s and his daughters who go back and forth to China before the Japanese occupation of Shanghai. Interesting also that the author warns about watching Asians in the future, especially "Japanese, Chinese, and Indians" and their future influence in the world. (This was written in 1958) . Her book goes into the Japanese part of WWII, but Germany is mentioned only briefly. She says nothing at all about the German quest for world power during the same war. Interesting omission, since this was written only 13 or so years after WWII, and by a German author who would have had fresh memories of the war in Europe."

China to MeI love old books and old historical fiction and what we can learn from them.

I became interested in the WWII period of Asian history from reading a partial autobiography, China to Me by Emily Hahn, published in 1944.  Hahn was an American journalist and a prolific writer who spent the years before and during the Japanese occupation in Shanghai, Hong Kong, and Chungking and experienced the war there first hand. Hers I find a fascinating journalist's view of people and events there. So much so that I am hooked on books written on this period in Chinese history.

Well, back to finishing that interesting German author's novel on WWII in Asia, for which I have a hot and cold reaction! I will have more time in August to read and review as I have decided to ease back into retirement. Missed the blogging :)

What did you do last week?

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joanna said...

Interesting reads you have there. I agree with you about finding value in old books and especially historic fiction and non-fiction. Some of my favorite reads have been from past centuries. I love exploring the different cultures and civilizations, interlaced with mathematical, astronomical, and historical information, exploring the customs and religions of different peoples.
Thank you for the comments on my blog, always appreciated and you are always welcome.

Lisa said...

WWII books from the Asian point of view would be really interesting. There is so much to be read out there about this war but so much of it still seems to be biased.

bermudaonion said...

Hopefully things will slow down and you can get more read this week.

Suzanne Yester said...

You may not have read a lot of book last week, but the books you are sharing this week are so interesting! I love the WWII period of Asian history too, and I'm going to look for that Emily Hahn book you mentioned. Thanks for sharing your reading today!

Laurel-Rain Snow said...

Whiter than Snow has been showing up here and there, and now I'm intrigued!

I see you've redesigned your blog with the new designer template. Isn't it fun?

Thanks for stopping by my blog.

Athira said...

I had a hectic week too, but managed to read a bit during the weekend. Have a good week!

Gilion at Rose City Reader said...

That Hahn biography looks particularly interesting.

Glad you will have more time to read in August!

Mystica said...

Historical fiction is always good and you have got some good ones there.

This is a new perspective for me i.e. from the Asian side so thanks for highlighting this book.

JoAnn said...

I can't tell you how long I've been meaning to read Sandra Dallas!

(Diane) Bibliophile By the Sea said...

I've read (3) Sandra Dallas books and liked them all --good author indeed.

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