The China Lover
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Ian Buruma's epic novel is the richly imagined story of one woman's struggle to survive in the face of war and occupation in the Far East during the Second World War. It should appeal to anyone who loved Memoirs of a Geisha. When Sidney Vanoven is sent to occupied Japan, in the immediate aftermath... read more of the Second World War, it is his dream posting. By day, he works in the censor's office watching Japanese films; at night he immerses himself in the sensual pleasures of Tokyo. His job leads him into the circle of the beautiful film star Shirley Yamaguchi, a passionate and indomitable woman, whose wartime secrets hint at deception and betrayal. As he becomes increasingly aware of her story, it seems to point at the dark heart of Japan itself. In "The China Lover", Ian Buruma has created a saga of modern Japan that is epic in scale, richly imagined and vividly populated. It is quite simply unforgettable.