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Peculiar Chris Paperback – 1992


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 228 pages
  • Publisher: Cannon International; 1st edition (1992)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9810035578
  • ISBN-13: 978-9810035570
  • Product Dimensions: 7.4 x 5.1 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 2.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #9,586,949 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By ricky_dyer@hotmail.com on July 29, 1999
Format: Paperback
Johann (Joe) Lee was 20 years old when this book was published. He wrote the book while carrying out his national service in Singapore at the age of 19. For that age it is a exceptionally mature piece of work. The first openly gay novel published in Singapore takes us through the life and loves of Chris and his adorebale partner Samuel. Perhaps the handling of HIV and AIDS could have been dealt with in a more informed fashion but what kind of detailed information was available to a youth in the Singapore army in the early nineties. This novel does not focus on gay sex or make at point of focusing on gay rights like so many other books available but deals with the individuals and their relationahips and feelings. It is hard not to indentify with the protagonist, Chris, who, from the authors decriptions, is the perfect partner. This is an all round good read for any adult regardless of sexual orientation. Even though this novel is now out of print it is certainly worth trying to get your hands on. I await with bated breath for Joe to put pen to paper again. If he could write with such maturity and insight at 19 his next novel will surely be another success. Joe now lives with his long term partner in London and I wish him all the best. "Joe, get writing again. You have an extreme talent. It's a shame to waste it"
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By S. S. Ying on July 11, 2009
Format: Paperback
Every character in this book is either sexually assaulted or widowed, or both.

Main character falls for his schoolmate. Schoolmate is unable to accept sexuality, returns home for an arranged marriage~
Main character's best friend, also gay, reveals rape by neighbour as a child.
Main character flashes back to mother leaving father for being alcoholic. Then father dies of leukemia. Main character is paralysed outside hospital room as this happens, and only gets to touch his COLD DED HAND~
Then main character enlists in the Army, is discriminated against! For his sexuality! Oh no! Then main character is almost "sexually assaulted" after he changes his mind halfway into a makeout session with a superior officer, is narrowly saved by boss.
Main character is overcome, goes to Australia for a break. Has a one-night-stand, and even this, the author cannot resist complicating - the guy he has a one night stand with? Yep. LOST A LOVER. TO LEUKEMIA. What are the odds.
Main character returns. Starts dating his boss, but relationship turbulent.
Main character finds out the reason for this: SEXUAL ABUSE!
Main character discovers that his mother has died.

At this point, I skip ahead and find:
Main character's boss gets into some kind of accident and needs blood. Hospital performs blood transfusion, and this may come as a shock to you after all the smooth sailing - ACCIDENTALLY TRANSFUSES HIV POSITIVE BLOOD.

After ALL this bloody histrionic soap operatic melodrama, the author has the nerve to state "sadness is not inherent to (this) lifestyle". Oh, no. Gay people are totally not doomed to horrible, miserable fates at all. What the hell.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on November 3, 1999
Format: Paperback
'Peculiar Chris', surprised me pleasantly. An interesting and perceptive account of a young man's life dealing with contemporay issues, at the time, of life in Singapore. Beautifully written, poignant and reminicent of a time, which meant much to the writer. All young gay men from around the world can relate to this book. It is a book for romantics. Although some issues in the novel are dealt with innocently and naiively, it is part and parcel of the charm of this young writers understanding,at the time, which makes this novel so much more heartfelt. Although many issues have changed over the years, we learn to appreciate the influences the writer was under at the time, and not only learn about his characters, which are colourful and diverse, but we gain a small insight to the writer himself. Johann S. Lee, let your fans rejoice once again, its time for your great pen to meet paper once more!
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1 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Hansel on May 27, 2005
Format: Paperback
I reread the book recently for an essay I have to write and I think the novel has no whatsoever merit to it at all. Johann Lee's youth is no excuse for his lack of literary talent. Mary Shelley wrote Frankenstein at the age of 18.

The coming-of-age novel is an exercise of his vindication of what he has done and not done: it plays on sexual stereotypes and yet at the same time, it tries to exult the author's status to the pedestal.

However, this is slightly better than Edmund Wee's The Narcissist, another Singaporean account of his gay life.
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