Kowloon Tong

Kowloon Tong
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Kowloon Tong

Product DescriptionA life-long British denizen of Hong Kong, Neville "Bunt" Mullard fears the colony's impending return to China's control, and the intrusion of a mysterious Chinese gentleman into Bunt's family business changes his life for good. Tour.Amazon.com ReviewPaul Theroux, whose inveterate globe-trotting marks him as one of the most restless writers working today, lands us in the Far East with this novel of personal lives swept up in the handover of Hong Kong from Britain to China. But the end of Colonial rule is perfectly unwelcome for Neville Mullard and his mother Betty, who run a textile factory that's been in the family for 50 years, and who have spent a lifetime insulating themselves from the Chinese culture that's all around them. Now, the shadowy and dangerous Mr. Hung wants to buy the business, and he won't take no for an answer--whether or not the Mullards want to sell. Theroux, the author of several travel books, has few equals when it comes to the portrayal of exotic cultures, a skill that makes this one of the first great novels of the Hong Kong handover of 1997.From Library JournalNeville "Bunt" Mullard is a quintessential Englishman: he likes eating at Fatty's Chophouse, going to the races, and having tea and oaties with Mum. Only Bunt was born and bred in Hong Kong, where he now runs a factory that his father established with Mr. Chuck, who has just died and left his shares to the Mullard family. Bunt is trying to ignore the imminent Chinese takeover of Hong Kong, but then Mr. Hung arrives from the mainland, demanding to buy the well-situated factory?and backing up his demands with some ugly tactics. Theroux's trademark contempt is in place here. The insipid Bunt and his coarse, avaricious mother are almost unbelievably awful, but in his ruthlessness Mr. Hung is even worse. The result can be pretty dispiriting, but this chilling little novel must be read to the end to catch the full effect of Bunt's breathtaking weakness. Whether it is read as a political fable challenging Britain's colonization and abandonment of Hong Kong or a morality tale about the worst in human nature, this is grim, note-perfect in its descriptions, and, one fears, absolutely honest.-?Barbara Hoffert, "Library Journal"Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc.From BooklistTheroux is a chameleon: each novel is completely different from the ones that went before. After blurring the line between fiction and autobiography inMy Other Life , he has plunged into a completely fresh and vivifying realm, present-day Hong Kong, and created a chilling, perfectly paced tale of insularity, coercion, and irrevocable change. Neville "Bunt" Mullard lives a pseudo-British life with his dull-witted, prejudiced, and widowed mother, Betty. A docile, coddled child, Bunt took his father's place at Imperial Stitching, inheriting the business outright when his partner died. Now in his forties, Bunt leads a frightfully routine and sterile existence utterly controlled by his bitter and smothering mother. His only indulgences are chatting up the denizens of the girlie bars that line the secretive streets of Kowloon Tong and having furtive sex with Mei-ping, one of the stitchers. Foolishly satisfied with his lot, he tries to avoid any mention of the "Hand-over," the end of British rule of Hong Kong. Even he, mentally and emotionally swaddled as he is, knows that this is no small matter, nor does he trust the ingratiating but somehow sinister Mr. Hung when he appears out of nowhere, offering to buy Imperial Stitching. Theroux's taut and suspenseful unraveling of Bunt's little world is absolutely riveting, capturing, as it does, the haunting sound of the last nail being pounded into the coffin of the British Empire.Donna SeamanFrom Kirkus ReviewsThe prolific author of, most recently, My Other Life (1996), and many other works set in faraway places, returns to one of his favorite locales--the Far East--in this tense novel abo

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Product Detail
Dimensions LxWxHx6.75x1x9
Weight 1.12
Brand Name Kowloon Tong

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