Kay, Guy Gavriel -- Under Heaven
GGK applies the GGK treatment to what Wikipedia tells me is the An Shi
Rebellion (China, Tang Dynasty, second Thursday). Imperial
China-I-mean-Kitai is one of those eras where saying the wrong word to
the wrong person can easily get you decapitated, disemboweled, or
exiled to Mongolia-I-mean-whatever. Thus, a perfect setting for Kay's
love of silent realizations, knowing glances, and allegorical poetry.
If you've read any Kay at all you should know whether you'll find this
evocative or want to throw the entire historical period through a
brick wall. I kind of went back and forth.
No, no, that's my love of sarcasm talking. I enjoyed this a lot. The
storytelling has a very stylized tone, but again, that's the style of
the period. The characters are all interesting and kick ass. It's not
exactly subtle that the exotically beautiful women are the green-eyed
blondes, but it fits, and they're as distinctive and relevant in the
plot as the other female (and male) characters. There are ninjas and
they think the protagonists are funny. I can go with it.
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