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Rative to stick strictly to facts and to not delight too much in what verges on supernatural ven recognising the nature of the narrators recording purposes As already mentioned the writing is too repetitive and laboured it needs a Hemingway slap across the faceReading Chinese cliches similes and metaphors is uite Wild Wicked Scot (Highland Grooms, enjoyable but also very strange and at times almost opaue for a western reader Take forxample There is a saying that some women are uite shrewish and some men toadying Or what seems to be a classic Chinese proverb you always save the best steel for knives The second I can kind of understand but the first seems to need the cultural context of having grown up in China and it diminishes your appreciation of the text without that background Contrast that to how Black on Blonde easily a western audience digests the General Patton uote used towards thend There s only one proper way for a professional soldier to die the last bullet of the last battle of the last war It s so The Walters Art Museum the Art of Ancient Greece easy for a western audience to understandIn saying all this you ll still be delighted by Abing Huang Yiyi Chen Erdu and a few of the others you ll keep reading largely to find out what happens to these tortured geniuses Unfortunately the main characters are mostly interesting in contrast to the bland supporting cast and surrounding characters and you ll be worn down by the way the brutal regime celebrates them in the shadows There s a famous story that Mao s favourite book was a little known French novel Whenever the French ambassadors went to China he would ask them about it and rave about how great it was The ambassadors would be confused and on reading the original French version remain confused as it seemed like a pretty run of the mill story with a unimpressive and poorly aged prose style In thend it turned out that the person who had translated the novel into Chinese was possibly one of the greatest Chinese writers of all time he had taken this French novel and turned it into a masterpiece through translation It may be with In The Dark that the opposite process has happened and what was a glowing piece of literature has through translation become a sputtering light Putting the dreadful Decoded aside In The Dark is a much better prospectThe reader is lead through four short stories all of which involve people with unusual and genius talents which are to be used and xploited by China s Secret Service at the mysterious cryptography Unit 701 Although Mai Jia s writing is sometimes uite surreal In The Dark is very readable and moves along nicely Reading Chinese literature is always interesting because characters often don t react as we in the West would Perhaps this is because they are often portrayed as Party members all work no play and the Party comes first In The Dark feels as though someone like Haruki Murakami has taken Mia Jia over and written a Chinese thriller but then Mia Jia has regained control of himself and written what must be a pretty good depiction of China s repressive regime and the accompanying absurdity that often accompanies secrets and spying. Dangerous mission from beyond the graveIn this story of conspiracies geniuses revolutionaries and terrible moral choices people sacrifice verything for a world of secrets until ultimately it destroys th.
Will review later a decent fantasy book tells China s secret agency Unit 701 comrades uniue stories during wartime This book told that lovepassion for someone or things can led a person to their death in strange ways I was uietly won over by this book Cryptography is interesting and the characters surrounding it are as cryptic as the ciphers they are listening for solving and sometimes living I highly recommend this novel really four stories joined by theme and subject Intricately woven and smart yet the pacing was furious and relentless I couldn t decide to take pause to ponder over some points or keep on flipping For some time I had stopped reading spy fiction since I could not stomach another of the LudlumClancy variety Discovering this book reignited my love for spy fiction That said this book was of a mixed genre work with heavy mysteryspy overtones but the overall feel would be literary fiction Recommended for all mysteryspy genre lovers who cannot stand the commercial variety Lis kiinalaista kryptoanalyysi Koodinmurtajan tapaan Siin miss Koodinmurtaja oli yhden ihmisen tarina ja Art, Culture, and Cuisine enemm n romaanimainen t m kirja koostuu nelj st osasta joista jokainen kertoo yhden poikkeuksellisen yksil n tarinan Kaikki tarinat liittyv t Koodinmurtajasta tuttuunrikoisyksikk 701een joka on Berlioz and His Century erikoistunut salakirjoituksiin ja niiden murtamiseen Koodien murtamisen kanssa n iss kin painitaan ja kuvataan ter v sti sit miten kryptoanalyysi on ala joka puristaa ihmisest irti kaiken mit irti on saatavissaAika kiinalainen juttu t m kinp ilem tt l nsimaisista kryptoanalyysin poikkeusyksil ist kerrottaisiin v h n Aristotles Rhetoric erilainen tarina ja kerrotaankin onhan se Turing leffa n hty In China Mai Jia is the king of spy novels a Chineseuivalent to someone like John Le Carr but whose work has a distinctly surrealist Blood Runs Green element to it In The Dark tells three tales of the mysterious code breakers at Unit 701 China s top secret intelligence unit taskedThe three stories share this common setting and a similar cast of characters all are linked also by their obsession towards codes and ciphers There is the wind listener a blind man whose supernatural hearingnables him to discern Charting an Empire even the sex of a barking dog there is an unstable maths genius who cracks the Kuomintang s newest best code but meets an unfortunatend at the hands of her lover s wife an old man so obsessed with codes he deciphers them in his dreams and lastly a tale of subterfuge and deception during the Vietnam War In The Dark is an Colored Property enjoyable spy novel made special by its plot it s rare to see China play a main role inspionage novels so to see the Cold War s high stakes game of spycraft from the Chinese perspective is particularly noteworthy this novel is a collection of four novellas loosely linked together they tell the story of a mysterious chinese intelligence service working in the mountains decrypting ciphers and codes as a matter of national importance Desire and Truth even better it s written by china s answer to john le carr sounds fun right so i was prettyxcited when i picked it up and it started off oka. 'Cracking another country's cipher is an undercover fight to the death'Hidden deep in the mountains the recruits at 'Unit 701' China's secret services operate in a dark shadowy world There is the 'wind li.
Y and it stayed okay and it The Exiles Gallery ended okay and that was it it was basically the bookuivalent of a flatline i think the language has been poorly translated because it s rather clumsy and the plot is pretty dull it got to a point where i was so bored with it that i often dreaded picking the book back up again i have no idea where the le carr comparisons come from Dislocating China either le carr s novels are full of complex twists and turns as duplicitous people work for duplicitous agencies and through that there is a subtle or often overt criticism of said agencies their agents their shady actions andven the concept of nationhood so of course such a thing can t Childerley exist in a chinese book which would have been censored by the chinese state before itven got to a printing press in the dark is what you get when you take an Cultural Excursions espionage thriller and minus the intrigue plotting and duplicity oh and thespionage Me ha gustado definitivamente me gusta Cruelty and Laughter este autor Me resultan tramas atractivas y diferentes This book has so much potential but really the whole book would be better marketed as a short story collection There s no real link betweenach story It s almost just a collection of 4 stories about people with variations of Asperger s syndrome That s a pretty parsimonious description but may seem uite prescient once you ve finished the bookIt is a strange novel I picked it up for 2 at a book sale written by the supposed Chinese John le Carre and best selling author in China I got it in an attempt to further understand Chinese cultural differences secondly to see what stories people in China are reading these days and lastly because the blurb caught my Cop Knowledge eye The novel was undermined byither a sub par translator or the writer being unable to Cultural Aesthetics edit his own material To compare it to other authors I would say it was like a combination of Haruki Murakami and John Le Carre but written by an unskilled high school student that could have been a translation issue though There s too many laboured details things said over and over again in slightly different ways repetition after repetition description followed by a similar descriptionxplanations of Class and Conformity explanations summaries of already summarised materials like some long drawn out distillation process a slow tedious simmering of material where you can t just have the final reduction you have toxperience the reducing Now you know what I m talking about I am however open to this strange writing style as a pastiche of the Chinese communist party way of writing Potentially the writer is purposely writing in a bureaucratic fashion to Descartes and His Contemporaries emulate what the Chinese would recognise as the party line The narrator is supposedly opening the vault on the mysterious Unit 701 though it s not made clear if he s writing a party report or just sharing the story with the general publicOn another note the genius component and magic parts of the story are wellxecuted but lack the mesmerising uality other magic realist authors like Murakami often ndow their prose with they also could have gone deeper It s almost like there is a Chinese impe. Stener' a blind surveillance officer who can hear sounds from miles away; the beautiful unstable maths genius who meets a violent nd; the old man who deciphers codes in his dreams; the spy who recounts
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Mai Jia is arguably the most successful writer in China today His books are constant bestsellers with total sales over three million copies He became the highest paid author in China last year with his new book Wind Talk He has achieved unprecedented success with film adaptation all of his novels are made or are being made into major films or TV series the screenplays of which are often