A family history and saga

  • Book: The Hare with Amber Eyes
  • Location: Paris, Tokyo, Vienna
  • Author: Edmund de Waal



I had high hopes for this book, it was set in locations I have been to (Including a brief reference to Tunbridge Wells) and I once saw an exhibition of netsuke at the Horniman Museum in London. For me this was not what the Sunday Times described “You havein your hands a masterpiece”. The Paris and Vienna locations are written in the present tense which alienated me from what, in parts, was a troubled time and alientated me from the many people he writes about the sentences were staccato in many parts, too short and abrupt – the netsuke make the odd appearance amongst the wealth of characters who make up de Waal’s family. I felt it only really got flowing when he got to Japan (the last pages, or so), where he writes in the past and I could start to “connect” with the place and the people.

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