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Showing 1-4 of 4 reviews(4 star). Show all reviews
on January 13, 1998
This book was well-written, but a disappointment to me because I thought Rozan's first book, China Trade, was excellent. In China Trade, Lydia Chin was interesting and witty, and her Chinatown background made her different. Bill Smith is as ordinary as his name. All his little quirks, like classical piano and his love of Lydia, are just that, quirks. They don't add up to a believable character. I got tired of his descriptions of fall leaves and his lonely, depressed personality. The plot was good and side characters like Mrs. Goldstein very well done. The African American dialogue some characters speak gets tedious. Lydia was a complete blank in this volume. She might have been a totally different person from the Lydia in China Trade. Her romantic feelings about Bill are vague. I would not recommend this book even though it did win the Shamus award.
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on August 3, 2001
I thought this was a well plotted and hard hitting PI novel. It is a fast paced, well-written page-turner with a dramatic and satisfying conclusion. Smith and Chin are interesting and likeable characters, but possibly a bit underdeveloped. (But I'll attribute this minor complaint to the fact that I did not read the first Rozan book.) The Smith/Chin relationship seems a little familiar, and the relationship with the burned out detective also seems overdone, but overall, Rozan creates a believable and original story that blends big-city corruption and inner city violence.
The minor complaints mentioned above notwithstanding, I give this a strong recommendation and I am looking forward to the next installment.
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on March 19, 2001
A wonderfully written and richly textured novel. Very well plotted and it makes sense thru-out.
Some passages were so well written I found myself reading them three or four times just to appreciate their beauty.
It is at least semi-dark and not the fastest read, but well worth the time and effort. It needs to be savored.
The protagonists are well drawn and this should be a strong series. The supporting cast is most intriguing.
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on November 27, 1997
This book concentrates on the male detective rather than Lydia Chin. The hero is funny, self-deprecating and sort of Rockford-like (as in Rockford Files). Good plot, easy to read. I'm looking forward to reading Mandarin Plaid.
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