Roman Kaziuka Kaziuka itibaren İcilli Köyü, 28310 İcilli Köyü/Bulancak/Giresun, Türkiye
I had a really fun time with this book. Most readers will know Charlson Ong for his short fiction (I remember studying it extensively as an undergrad english major, before actually meeting Ong as a panelist and then as my professor) but this novel is both clearly Ong, with the rich Chinese background injected into his stories, and also something totally new for the writer, and Phil Lit in general. Sure the detective novel has been done before, and done very well. Look no further than Smaller and Smaller Circles. But there's an expansiveness to this novel. Those looking for a traditional detective novels with lots of twists and turns may be disappointed because it doesn't work that way. It does however, deliver a powerful and engaging story. And Ong's workings of the conventions of noir (the jazz singer in a red cheongsam instead of a red dress, the cop who needs redemption for his sins serving crooked bosses clearly a reworking of the PI with the upturned collar and long coat, Binondo and Chinatown (and darn that one because I wanted to write something like that, I'm such a fanboy for Polanski's masterpiece) and many more. This is a book that is characteristically and uniquely Pinoy, and yet a strong addition to world literature too, showing how we can craft the novel.