Tuesday, May 19, 2009

#8 - The Dragonhead

John Sack's "The Dragonhead" was a bargain bin find I came across a few months back and shelved for the right time. That time finally came and while I enjoyed it it required some work on my part to keep it that way. The writing style is not for me at all and smacks of trying to be a bit too clever for his own good. The other drawback for me is that it is "literary journalism" which basically means it is all based on reality and truth but the writer takes some liberties and creates dialogue and environments and situations. I find this incredibly frustrating and you have to suspend your belief to enjoy the minute details because you know they are fabrications. Even with all of this, the story is true and it follows the life and times of Johnny Kon, The Dragonhead, essentially the head of the Chinese Mafia and it is a decent ride. It's long, a bit contrived, a bit repetitive, but engaging and interesting to see things through his eyes such as the Vietnam War, America, and retribution. It's a tough call on this one, but I'd say in the end it is Recommended.

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