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Review – The Red Chrysanthemum March 1, 2012

Posted by thehypermonkey in 2 stars, Mystery/Thriller.
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The Red Chrysanthemum

by Laura Joh Rowland

(also available in paperback and on NOOK)

Sano Ichiro’s pregnant wife Lady Reiko has been found next to the mutilated and bloody corpse of Lord Mori. Not only is she accused of his murder, Sano stands accused of treason. The two of them must face these charges together or be executed together.

This book didn’t have much to recommend itself to. I found the characters acting in a manner that was very unlike the Japanese culture in which this book was set in. This may have been the point, but it rankled.

Sano went around accusing all the suspects point blank of killing Lord Mori without any proof in desperation. Only it didn’t come off as desperate really. It came off as blustering and blundering without a clue.  Lady Reiko did some investigating of her own with much the same effect. She did a lot of accusing of her own which made her seems just as clueless.

The dialogue was trite and unbelievable. I heaved great sighs of annoyance throughout the book.

While the climax of the book had an intellectually stimulating satisfying ending, the dialogue! The dialogue killed it!

Finally, the antics of the antagonist in her final moments before the executioner’s block had me in disbelief. It was a sub-par effort for sub-par book. All in all a very disappointing book for what is usually a very good series.

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Comments»

1. Laurie Brown - March 1, 2012

Ach, what a shame it’s so poorly done. I’ll scratch that one off my list!

akamaireader - March 1, 2012

I’m currently trying to get through Snow Empress the next in the series, but Red Chrysanthemum has really soured me on the whole business. I might have to give Sano a rest for awhile.


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