Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

The Warlord by Malcolm Bosse

The Warlord (1983)

by Malcolm Bosse

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
183164,645 (3.16)5

Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

No current Talk conversations about this book.

» See also 5 mentions

I had to think a lot about what bothered me about this book, and I think in the end I decided that overall, there just didn't seem to be much point. Don't get me wrong, it's a good book, and, as epics go, it's pretty darned epic. I'm not really familiar enough with the area to vouch for the historical accuracy, but certainly many historic figures play bit parts, such as Chiang Kai-Shek and Chairman Mao.

The inevitable comparisons are to James Clavell. I suspect that the critics would probably prefer this book to Clavell's more mind-candyish experience, but I don't. The book follows, roughly, five characters, and most of them are left in pretty ambiguous situations at the end. (I understand there is a sequel.) Clavell doesn't really do that inside a single book. He tends to surprise you at the beginning of the next book which occurs fifty years later and everything you thought was going to happen, didn't, but taking each book by itself, most of the plot points are wrapped up pretty neatly. It's a pretty good trick for books that appear be fairly closely based on actual people.

Not so with Warlord With the possible exception of the eponymous general, all of the characters could be literal autobiographies, but we wouldn't know it. A Russian courtesan, a failed Communist, a German gunrunner, all characters with no historical significance, and unless they turn out to be the author's grandparents, not characters you would ever hear of again.

They're good characters. They're interesting and complex,and show remarkable strength at surprising times. But it's just too hard to see where the whole thing is leading. There's a climactic battle that occurs late in the book, and I think the whole thing could have been dropped without any loss to the flow of the book. Very strange. Maybe I'm just not smart enough for this one. ( )
  benfulton | May 25, 2009 |
no reviews | add a review
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Series (with order)
Canonical title
Information from the Dutch Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to your language.
Original title
Alternative titles
Original publication date
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
First words
Last words
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Publisher series
Original language

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English (1)

Book description
Haiku summary

No descriptions found.

No library descriptions found.

Quick Links

Swap Ebooks Audio
39 avail.1 pay

Popular covers


Average: (3.16)
1 1
2 4
3 6
4 7
5 1

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.


You are using the new servers! | About | Privacy/Terms | Help/FAQs | Blog | Store | APIs | TinyCat | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | Common Knowledge | 118,588,931 books! | Top bar: Always visible