- File Size: 5003 KB
- Print Length: 278 pages
- Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
- Publisher: Curiosity Quills Press; 1 edition (September 8, 2016)
- Publication Date: September 8, 2016
- Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
- Language: English
- ASIN: B01HYK2MHC
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Enabled
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #583,160 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
|Print List Price:||$17.99|
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Hundred Ghost Soup (Bureau for Eternal Prosperity Book 1) Kindle Edition
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|Length: 278 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
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Set in China and rooted in Chinese folklore/myth, it's about the longing for family and rooted belonging, about the journey to adulthood, and what it means to be a son. (Also, there are ghosts! Fox spirits! Emissaries of the Heavens! Shapechanging!)
Suitable for YA and Middle Grade readers, but adults will love it, too.
The story is set in modern China, but, if its portrayal is correct, ancient customs and folklore are a lot closer to that country’s supposedly rational surface than its Maoist bosses would probably like to believe. The folklore is the best part of the story, too; it appears not only in Bei Jimo’s direct interactions with his foxy “parents” and the ghosts but in short sub-narratives embedded in the main story. Its uneasy fit with the country’s contemporary overlay shows both in Bei Jimo’s conflicted reactions and in a mysterious government agency called the Bureau for Eternal Prosperity (it feels a little like a Chinese version of Charles Stross’s “Laundry”) that is investigating the chief fox spirit, Mr. Vulpin.
I enjoyed the folklore, but overall the book did not really work for me. Bei Jimo admittedly has good reason to feel sorry for himself, but he does far too much of that for my taste. By the halfway point, too, I had not glimpsed enough of either the agency’s or Mr. Vulpin’s plans to remain curious about the rest. I therefore did not finish the book.
The story blended several plot lines, both current and historical, in a way that kept me captivated. I particularly enjoyed the base of Chinese mythology on which the story is built coupled with the modern setting. The characters felt real to me and I was always pulled to read on to learn more about them.
I highly recommend his book.