REVIEW ´ The Devil of Nanking

SUMMARY The Devil of Nanking

REVIEW ´ The Devil of Nanking ☆ With the redolent atmosphere of Ian Rankin and the spine chilling characters of Thomas Harris Mo Hayder's The Devil of Nanking takes the reader on an electrifying literary ride from the palatial apartments of yakuza kingpins to deep inside the secret history of one of the twentieth century's most brutal events the NankWith the redolent atmosphere of Ian Rankin and the spine chilling characters of Thomas Harris Mo Hayder's The Devil of Nanking takes the reader on an electrifying literary ride from the palatial apartments of yakuza kingpins to deep inside the secret history of one of the twentieth century's most brutal events the Nanking Massacre A young Englishwoman obsessed with an i. ”You can be brave and confident as you like you can convince yourself that you’re invulnerable that you know what you’re dealing with You think that it won’t ever really get too serious that there’ll be some kind of a warning before it goes that far danger music maybe playing offstage the way you get in films But it seems to me that disasters aren’t like that Disasters are life’s great ambushers they have a way of jumping on you when your eyes are fixed on something else” Rape of NankingObsessions are sometimes strangely conceived We don’t know why something out of an onslaught of information sticks with us and won’t let go of us For our protagonist Grey growing up in an overly protective home the one thing that slips through all the rigorous controls of her parents is a book an orange covered book on the atrocities that happened in Nanking China in 1937 Maybe the reason she was so interested in what that book had to say was that it talked about an aspect of human behavior that was so far removed from anything else she had ever read about or even thought about Nine years seven months and eighteen days is how long she has been researching investigating every nugget of available information about an atrocity that most people would rather leave buried in the past Nine years seven months and eighteen days is how long it has taken her to track down Shi Chongming A man with a secret a devastating secret Shi Chongming stood in the doorway very smart and correct looking at me in silence his hands at his sides as if he was waiting to be inspected He was incredibly tiny like a doll and around the delicate triangle of his face hung shoulder length hair perfectly white as if he had a snow shawl draped across his shoulders He is a Chinese linguist hired by a Japanese university He is a survivor of the 1937 slaughter of Nanking He is the reason that Grey has come from London to Japan She is chasing down a rumor that he has a short film that confirms and exposes the devastation perpetrated on the Chinese civilians by Japanese soldiers Shi Chongming denies it but not convincingly He puts her off She adds days to her uest Nine years seven months and twenty days She is broke Tokyo even in the 1990s recession is one of the most expensive cities in the worldA good looking American named Jason finds her in the park and offers her a place to stay Now Grey is naive but since she left the confines of her parent’s bubble of protection she has received some knocks some realizations with tragic conseuences that have given her some understanding of how the world works Men don’t offer to give you shelter without expecting some kind of payment Jason has his own uirks and Grey soon becomes one of them ”You’re hiding something” He raised his arms and used the sleeves of his T Shirt to wipe his forehead “It’s easy I just look at you and I can see it I don’t know what it is exactly but I’ve go the the instinct it’s something I’m going to like See I’m a’ he raised two fingers and lightly tapped his forehead ‘I’m a visionary when it come to women I can feel it in the air My God my skin’ He shivered and ran his hands down my arms ‘My skin just about changes colour’‘You’re wrong’ I wrapped my hands round my stomach ‘I’m not hiding anything’‘Yes you are’‘I’m not’He looked at me in amusement’Of course you’re not’Grey is most definitely hiding something A lit poster of Mickey Rourke provided the only source of light in Grey’s room in the crumbling house she shares with Jason and a couple of Russian girlsJason hooks her up with a Madame Strawberry who dresses like Marilyn Monroe and has procured the help of a plastic surgeon to increase her resemblance to the Hollywood icon She runs an upscale nightclub with a Some Like it Hot theme Grey is not a natural fit for entertaining men but caucasian hostesses are in short supply so she is hired on a trial basis It turns out she is pretty good at it In what could have been a disaster she decides to talk about Nanking with a group of men who are the sons of the soldiers that invaded China They know nothing about the barbarity that was perpetrated by their fathers as they crossed China These men who when they returned to Japan hugged their wives their mothers and their daughters were the same men who brutally raped Chinese women on an epic scale These men who played games with their sons and honored their fathers in Japan were the same men who killed so many civilians in Nanking that they had to pile them up in a mound so large that at one point from a distance the stack of bodies is mistaken by a resident of the city for Tiger Mountain Civilization our grandest achievement is so readily abandoned The veneer of honor is replaced with a total disregard for human life I wish I could say that what happened in Nanking was just an anomaly but there are plenty of examples in history where civilized human beings became barbarians Grey needs to see that film It will confirm all she has been working for When a man in a wheelchair a seemingly insignificant event arrives at the nightclub with an entourage and a nurse of uncertain sexual orientation it uickly becomes apparent to Grey that this is no ordinary man He is a member of an organization called the Yakuza ”Anywhere in Tokyo you could be aware of the presence of the yakuza the underground gangs who claimed to be descendants of the samurai tradition They were some of the most feared and violent men in Asia Sometimes it was just the sounds of the bosozoku motorcycle gangs that reminded you of their existence like a chrome wave rolling down Meiji Dori at dead of night sweeping everything in front of them the characters for kamikaze painted on their helmets”Even Grey as naive as she is knows to be careful The uote above reminds me of that scene from the 1989 movie Black Rain when the Andy Garcia character is surrounded by yakuza gangsters with samurai swords whipping through the air on motorcycles in a parking garage One of the most dramatic death scenes on film He was pushing a wheelchair in which sat a diminutive insectile man fragile as an ageing iguana His head was small his skin as dry and crenulated as a walnut and his nose was just a tiny isosceles nothing than two shady dabs for nostrils – like a skull’s The wizened hands that poked out from his suit cuffs were long and brown and dry as dead leaves Fuyuki may need help getting around but despite his infirmity his power is undiminished As the plot thickens Grey discovers that Fuyuki has something that Shi Chongming desperately wants The only way Grey is going to get to see that film is if she can steal the “potion” that Fuyuki needs to live I wouldn’t say I’ve exactly given up on thrillers I used to read them by the wheelbarrow full but have found them in recent years to be bloated too influenced by CGI and frankly unsatisfactory Arah Lynda sent me this book as a recommendation with a compelling wish that I would read it and review it How could I possibly say no By the way Arah Lynda wrote this spectacular review of this book that everyone should read Arah Lynda reviewMo Hayder wrote two stories one set in 1937 with Shi Chongming and the other in the 1990s with Grey Usually when I read a book with two timelines I prefer one or the other and find myself impatiently reading the one that I don’t prefer so I can get back to the one that really has my attention NOT the case at all here Both storylines are so compelling that I eagerly gulped down each new revelation in either time period with eual relish Nice neck MoMo Hayder also kept me off balance and speculating endlessly between chapters as to what happened to Grey How did she end up in a mental institution where a helpful roommate taught her about jigging new word for me Does Grey have a labeled psychotic condition As the action heats up I was worried about her fragile mental condition and whether each new setback would be the one that put her back in a state of mind that had her institutionalized On the other timeline with Shi Chongming and his wife in Nanking Hayder puts you right there with them starving to death paralyzed with fear unwilling to accept what is happening and finding yourself lifting a rock over your head to do the unthinkable The pacing is perfect Hayder strings out the information with such patience Each new disclosure packs a punch that will leave you dazed I needed an 8 count than once to let the latest illumination click into place Highly recommended Much than just a thriller it is like a white knuckled LA freeway experience coupled with an important exposé into the very real tragedy that occurred in Nanking Highly RecommendedWar what is it good for Absolutely nothingWill Byrnes wrote an insightful review about the book The Rape of Nanking please don't miss it Click for Will Byrnes ReviewIf you wish to see of my most recent book and movie reviews visit also have a Facebook blogger page at


Be the key to gaining the professor's trust An old man in a wheelchair surrounded by a terrifying entourage the gangster is rud to rely on a mysterious elixir for his continued health Taut gritty sexy and harrowing The Devil of Nanking is an incomparable literary thriller set in one of the world's most fascinating cities Tokyo from an internationally best selling author. 45 of 5 stars This book inspired by the real Nanking massacre in 1937 was very dark and very disturbing I can really feel myself holding my own breath as this was so intense so incredibly terrifying and chilling to read that I can feel the goosebumps all over me while reading this book Especially the ending where it finally showed what was inside that film Grey was seeking My stomach seriously turned The twist of this book made my head spin It was so fitting to have both Grey and Shi Chongming's perspective which was shown in a different timeline both perspective eventually meet and decided to drop the bomb at the end There are a lot of trigger warnings that everyone should be aware of before reading but nevertheless this was very thought provoking I highly highly recommend this for those who are willing to proceed with this kind of book

Mo Hayder ó 1 REVIEW

The Devil of NankingNdecipherable past Grey comes to Tokyo seeking a lost piece of film footage of the notorious 1937 Nanking Massacre footage some say never existed Only one man can help Grey A survivor of the massacre he is now a visiting professor at a university in Tokyo But he will have nothing to do with her So Grey accepts a job in an upmarket nightspot where a certain gangster may. Ugh Grey not her real name is on a mission to uncover the truth about Nanking Why you wonder Well as a teenager Grey got knocked up and then figured that the only way to deal with this was to cut open her own womb She thought the baby would be fine because she had read that some babies survived this when the Japanese army did the same thing to pregnant women in Nanking Supposedly she believed this because her parents had homeschooled and completely sheltered her to the point that she didn't know that performing surgery on yourself is not a good idea And even though she read about the actions in Nanking in a book called something like Massacre in Nanking she thought it was good advice to follow She seemed to think it unfair that this resulted in her being sent to a mental hospital but I think it was the right place for her Oh and she got pregnant because as a naive 13 year old she went off and had sex with 5 unknown teenagers in a van And even though her parents had sheltered her to the point that she didn't know what a condom was they gave her enough freedom to wander around the neighborhood and jump in random vans All of these facts were huge stumbling blocks for me and the fact that her background was never explained beyond being sheltered was frustrating If your family life is such that you think a DIY Caesarean is your only option that sounds interesting Please share The good points were that Grey spends part of the book working in a hostess club as did the author Since those clubs aren't part of my usual Japan milieu I was interested enough to keep reading The tension and thriller aspects were practically non existent And I disliked Grey so much that even when she was in mortal peril I didn't careNot recommended