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Rising Sun by Michael Crichton
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Rising Sun (edition 1992)

by Michael Crichton

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3,783281,376 (3.35)27
Member:wildbill
Title:Rising Sun
Authors:Michael Crichton
Info:Ballantine Books (1992), Mass Market Paperback, 416 pages
Collections:Your library, read
Rating:***1/2
Tags:fiction

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Rising Sun by Michael Crichton

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Showing 1-5 of 24 (next | show all)
Michael Crichton's books are hit or miss. Rising Sun is a miss. I think it's supposed to be taking place during the mid to late 1980s when there was an influx of Japanese business ventures in the United States -- especially in California. I remember the xenophobic response from some people of my parents age and especially of people my grandparents age (not everyone, of course). As a teenager, I was surprised, confused and later embarrassed by the reactions of my relatives.

Rising Sun is clearly playing into those sentiments and frankly I don't like it. Both cultures, American and Japanese in this book are reduced to stereotypal representations making for a boring, predicatable and insulting read. ( )
  pussreboots | Sep 1, 2014 |
Written in 1992, this book was very dated in its plot. Crichton was heavy handedly warning about how the Japanese were rapidly taking over the U.S. Well, the Japanese economy ended up imploding and now the Chinese are taking over. I wonder if he'd be surprised. The plot was pretty good, good characters but it got far too bogged down in the minutiae of Japanese business and culture so it was a slow read at times. ( )
  AliceAnna | Aug 17, 2014 |
no rating, prior to recording
  Carole-Ann | Aug 6, 2014 |
I'm not much of a reader of detective or mystery novels. However, after reading Rising Sun, I may need to go out and buy a couple good books and see what the genre is like. Rising Sun is unlike the mountain and technological thrillers that Crichton is known for. It's more of a mystery than thriller and lacks much of the technology aspect from his other books. It was a very refreshing new look at the type of books Crichton can write and was actually very intriguing.

Rising Sun takes place in Los Angles and a time where the Japanese have begun to invest heavily into the United States. Peter Smith, is in Japanese liaison for the Special Services department of the LAPD. Basically, he works with the police department in cases dealing with the Japanese community. He's called to an investigation into a murder of a woman at the grand opening of the new Nakamoto Tower, the headquarters of a major Japanese company. Smith brings in an old cop, John Connor, to help with the investigation. Connor was also part of the Special Services and specialized in working with the Japanese. His is a smart man with deep connections in the Japanese community. Together, they work to solve the case of the murdered woman, running across the Los Angles area and running into different problems along the way.

Crichton does a very good job of leaving small details throughout the book. They are unnoticeable at first, but when they become key pieces of the story later on, I was definitely amazed at how I just glanced over the parts. Timeline is filled with small plot twists and made me constantly change who I was suspecting to be behind the murder. Every piece of evidence added a new dimension to the story and slowly unraveled the reason behind her murder.

Each character in the story was very well developed. I felt a clear progression with the development of the main protagonist, Peter Smith. Throughout the book, his past history becomes a part of the story. Every moment, I learned something more about him, whether its something about his personality and the way he acts or about something in his past. The other characters in the story are also well represented. Each feel very unique and different from each other. On one side of the spectrum, we have a detective that absolutely loathes the Japanese and is always gunning to try and do something to take them down. On the other side, we have more reflective people who take the time to really think about the situation.

I got a glimpse into the prejudices and feelings that Americans had towards the Japanese during the time period. Many of the characters gave the feeling of being anti-Japanese. It was very interesting to see this type of viewpoint from back then in the modern world. Now, Japanese culture has infused itself into our everyday lives. Companies like Honda, Sony, and Samsung are now household names today and are held with high respect, but in the book, the people saw them as enemies. How we view others changes over the years and Rising Sun shows a clear change from the modern world. I did feel that this idea was way overemphasized in the book. Every person seemed to want to say the same thing about them, but in a different way. It got a bit boring and annoying after the first couple times.

There are some very graphic passages throughout the book, both through the use of profanity and through images. I felt a bit repulsed at the excessive use of profanity throughout the book, but it does fit the time period of which it came. Some of the graphic descriptions of the murdered woman are a bit over the top. Crichton definitely didn't have to go all out on this subject, but he did anyways.

I'm not well versed in prime detective novels, but I still felt that Crichton gave a very strong effort into Rising Sun. It's fast paced and thrilling. The characters are wonderfully diverse and its interesting to see how they change throughout the book. It's full of plot twists and will keep you guessing. If you can get around the profanity and constant ranting on the Japanese, Rising Sun is a great read and is one of the more unique books from Michael Crichton. ( )
  Plyte | Sep 3, 2013 |
I'm sure this was very timely and topical back in the Reagan/Bush era when we were terrified that the Japanese were going to bury us up to our necks in unsold Magnavox and Zenith television sets, but by the time I read it in 2000 or so, it was just a clunky crime novel. In other words, it's one of the better Crichton novels I've read. ( )
1 vote benjamin.duffy | Jul 28, 2013 |
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We are entering a world where the old rules no longer apply. --Phillip Sanders
Business is war. --Japanese motto
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To my mother, Zula Mille Crichton
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Actually, I was sitting on my bed in my apartment in Culver City, watching the Lakers game with the sound turned off, while I tried to study vocabulary for my introductory Japanese class.
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Er wacht ons een wereld waarin de oude regels niet meer van toepassing zijn. (Phillip Sanders)
Zakendoen is oorlog. (Japans motto)
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0345380371, Mass Market Paperback)

During the grand opening celebration of the new American headquarters of an immense Japanese conglomerate, the dead body of a beautiful woman is found. The investigation begins, and immediately becomes a headlong chase through a twisting maze of industrial intrigue and a violent business battle that takes no prisoners.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:45:39 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

During the grand opening celebration of the new American headquarters of an immense Japanese conglomerate, the dead body of a beautiful woman is found. The investigation begins, and immediately becomes a headlong chase through a twisting maze of industrial intrigue and a violent business battle that takes no prisoners.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

» see all 6 descriptions

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