- THE THING: This book: Immortal Khan, by H. Doug Matsuoka, © 2001
- THE HAIKU REVIEW:
Centuries old Khan
master of machinery
is hunted and found.
- THE FULL REVIEW:
The story opens with a car/motorcycle/helicopter chase. You can't go wrong with something like that.
Khan was a master craftsman of metalworks in centuries old China. He would create toys and diversions of incredible complexity. When he was asked to use his abilities to create weapons, he know he could no longer be a part of that society, so he ran. He eventually met Chung Li, who taught him many things about his mond and body, and through his studies learned the ways of immortality.
Flash forward to the present day. Chung is searching for his old student, to prevent history from repeating itself.
This book was just a blast to read. The ancient Chinese masters would switch between traditional-sounding speech, and modern vernacular. It was funny, and gave the book a gangster-style feel at times. There is some great suspenseful action, and creative characters, as well as creative ways to develop them.
The text has an odd flow to it, though. It is written almost like a film script, of sorts. There are what seem like sorts of chapter titles that describe the setting. Sometimes they stand alone, but sometimes they are actually integrated into the text of the story....
"A waiter carries a tray of various elegant serving vessels through the busy tables at the crowded restaurant. He turns a corner and begins ascending
A large wooden carving of a dragon descending through clouds runs the height of the stairway. At the top of the stairs, Waiter steps into
Which passes the doorways of a number of unoccupied private dining areas."
It's a little odd at first, but it gives the story an almost breathless flow, and a definite cinematic quality.
Final Score on the Chris Worth Scale: $5.95. A high-quality paperback book. Although, my version is of course an eBook. Buy eBooks, people. Thank you. ( I don't own any eBook stock or anything, I just want to make sure they keep making them!)