Country #50: Mongolia

I AM REALLY EXCITED ABOUT THIS! Like, hyper-nerd excited.
What am I going to learn? SUPER COOL STUFF, I’M SURE.

Jumping in with two happy feet!

 

Reading Kyrgyzstan: Restless Valley

Central Asia is endlessly fascinating to me, so I was super happy to have Kyrgyzstan up on my reading list. I landed on Restless Valley: Revolution, Murder, and Intrigue in the Heart of Central Asia by Phillip Shishkin as my introduction to this corner of the world.

But, second destination in a row where the locale is way more intriguing than the book I picked. I swear I’m not being curmudgeonly! Or at least I hope that’s not it…

There was a lot to like about this book, don’t get me wrong. The author obviously knows his way around the political and social terrain of a very, VERY complicated place. I doubt that any one viewpoint could fully embrace all of the intricacies baked into the cake there.

That said, this just read oddly to me. A bit repetitive perhaps? The author didn’t trust the reader to remember people he had introduced earlier, leading to awkward second meetings. I hadn’t realized before this book that would bother me, but indeed it does. Good to know, huh?

I am glad to have had the chance to learn what I’ve learned, and I look forward to some fiction titles I have picked out by Kyrgyz author, Chignhiz Aitmatov. Now, I have a bit of a sense-of-place before diving in. Onward and upwards!

Bei Inylchek, Tian Shan Mountains, Kyrgyzstan
Bei Inylchek, Tian Shan Mountains, Kyrgyzstan (image by Jürgen Grösel, via Wikimedia Commons)

Country #46: Kyrgyzstan

Central Asia: SO INTERESTING. And so not-talked about here in the U.S. very often, even though I’m sure our government is up to all sorts of things in that part of the world.
Very ready to dive in and learn as much as I can. Let’s do this!

Reading Singapore: The Art of Charlie Chan Hock Chye

Going back over some older ground…because I never read a book about Singapore. Which is ridiculous.

The wait was worth it! On the recommendation of very smart book blogger, Bibloglobal, I picked up The Art of Charlie Chan Hock Chey by Sonny Liew and I’m so very glad I did.

Dazzling. Brilliant. A complete vision executed flawlessly.
I don’t know – I COULD GO ON AND ON.

I’m blown away. It’s that good. And I won’t discuss it further, because I might ruin it for you. Just one more thing: don’t read any other reviews before you dig into this graphic novel. Wait until after and all shall be illuminated…trust me!

Cover of The Art of Charlie Chan Hock Chye
Cover of The Art of Charlie Chan Hock Chye (image from http://www.sonnyliew.com)