Parker, The Masuda Affair
- The Perils of Akitada. Superiors who hate him, wives who fail to understand him, henchmen who have lives of their own, and communication failures all round. Generally I have limited sympathy for characters who torture themselves about what someone else must surely be thinking or feeling or doing, and Akitada has turned into one of these.
Yes well, that's the thing. I don't like anything much that I'm reading. I put this down to the adverse effects of goodreads. As in, how can I continue with The Pound Era and Kenner's sneering at Waley for not being the poet Pound was, when one review says "I kind of wanted to punch the author's voice in the face. Doesn't mean I didn't enjoy the book, but still, made my fist feel a little punchy." Dear lord yes. And another, which has now vanished (where did all your reviews go, goodreads?) quoting I-forget-who saying Pound's poetry is all paste jewelry. Quite. Why go on with the exegesis, then?
Saving Fish from Drowning is about a bunch of callow unlikable American tourists. It's "an examination/satire of American society, or at least well-meaning upper class West Coast American society" which has sort of been done before? by anybody writing about upper class West Coast American society? ever? And then, goodreads tells me, it segues into heavy politics as anything set in Myanmar will. Yes it fulfills one reading challenge category, but so would The Classic of Mountains and Seas. Mind, TCoMaS translation I have translates all the names literally, which has an acid trip effect. So maybe I'll skim Fishes to see if we ever learn who offed the protagonist, and then go read about Mt. Roundchild-scorchedhot.
So I'm rereading A Robe of Feathers, modern youkai or youkai in modern times. Umbrella spirits on the subway tormenting drunken sararimen, the (cannibal) Bean Washer under a subway bridge befriending a brain damaged hobo.
Also reading an anthology of modern trickster tales, The coyote road, and have liked the few I've finished so far. Should make a note of collections I read; earlier this year I read a Swedish? story about a family that has erm probably troll women in it, though no one ever says. Have no idea what the collection was, is why I wish libraries would keep a record of what you've taken out as Google records your searches.
A Tana French is on its way from the library, and maybe it won't fantod me too badly.
The Tan dead narrator having worked out so badly, I'm tempted to read Three Souls by Janie Chang which also has a dead narrator. But maybe I should consult goodreads first.