Fiction/Non Fiction: Fiction
Themes: Supernatural, Vietnamese folklore.
One sentence summary: A book of interwoven journeys and supernatural happenings.
Overview: Two women mysteriously disappear, 25 years apart to the day and no one could have guessed the events that led to them. Steeped in history and multiple timelines, their journeys collide and secrets are uncovered.. but not always for the better.
Bored in her life and teaching job in Saigon, Winnie begins to find different and sometimes dangerous ways to fill her time. With pressures from her family and society, she tries to socialise more with her colleagues and even tries meeting other people outside of that circle. Little does she know how much new acquaintances will change her.
I couldn’t put this book down! My interest was peaked from the beginning and with each chapter and timeline change I was more and more invested in the stories. Each chapter brings together more pieces of the puzzle to work out how these stories intertwine and how each character is linked but is done so in such a subtle way, so it doesn’t always feel like an investigation. The links between minor details in each story was exquisite and was so beautifully done, being drip fed the story in such a way can only lead to a crescendo of an ending and I was not disappointed.
Set against the backdrop of Vietnam, I loved how much of the city and surrounding areas of Saigon we travelled to in the book. There were many a historical tidbit which added flavour to the timelines, the maps in the front were a beautiful accompaniment to this.
The characters in this book were hauntingly odd and some perhaps quite unpredictable at times. This really added to the mystery of the story, I think anything other than peculiar and possibly dislikeable characters would have felt out of place.
Would I read it again? Absolutely. A perfect seasonally haunting read, without the horror that is sometimes too much for me. I’m sure reading it again I’d notice different things again and I can’t wait.
Read this? Plan to read it? I'd love to know! Let me know in the comments below.
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