Mike’s Prattle


Edward Whittemore – Quin’s Shanghai Circus

Posted by Mike on May 22, 2006

This has been the one book of fiction that has been my companion through a very dark period of life. I'm not sure any sort of hyperbole and praise can really encompass the experience of reading it. It's scary to think this is Edward Whittemore's first book because the skill involved in every facet of the writing process speaks of a veteran. It charts the journey of a man whose encounter with fate sets him on a mission to find out about his parents, but ends up charting an epic whose reach spans the whole range of human experience. The characters are astonishing, a range of larger than life figures whose lives are woven like a mosaic through time, all except the relatively prosaic protagonist whose calm exterior provides for a late book payoff of incredible proportion. Ths story is so far away from the typical sentimental stringpulling one finds in so much popular art of the modern era that to try and say anything meaningful on its observations of the human condition is impossible. It's incredible to think this isn't even supposed to be his best book because there's no rating scale to encompass this.


2 Responses to “Edward Whittemore – Quin’s Shanghai Circus”

  1. dt said

    Read this based on your recommendation here. Wow! Great stuff. I’m not sure I even absorbed half of what was there, so it will be a great re-(re-re-)read.

  2. Mike said

    Glad to hear. Apparently Whittemore’s books are great for rereading too. Won’t be long before I start his next one – not sure how long I can hold out.

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