Tuesday, November 06, 2012
The Laughing Sutra by Mark Salzman
Wei Ching was a monk from a monastery that have been destroyed by fire. During the fire, he had rescue many scrolls and sutra from the monastery and hence on made it his life work to protect them. But among all the sutra that he had accumulated, there is one sutra that elude his grasp, The Laughing Sutra.
It was said that the one who read and understood The Laughing Sutra will have immortality.
Hsun-ching is a orphan that was saved from a certain death and was given to Wei Ching to raise. Initially Wei Ching was reluctant to take on the responsibility as he wanted to go hunting for The Laughing Sutra. However, it was not meant to be.
In turn, Hsun Ching took on the task of seeking out The Laughing Sutra for Wei Ching. This task brings him to the mysterious Colonel Sun. Together, they travel all the way from China to Hong Kong and then to San Francisco in order to retrieve The Laughing Sutra.
The journey was fill with hardship and danger.
This is typical modern "Journey To The West" story plus "Tom Sawyer" all mixed together.
I must say I have enjoyed the story very much. The East meets West. It is very rich in the eastern culture. I like the part where the mysterious Colonel Sun appeared in Hsun Ching life in China, Hong Kong and San Francisco. Can help laughing when Colonel Sun was mystified by the modern days convenience like the Lift.
The pace of the book and plot was fast enough for me. The adventures was suspenseful
The only thing that I feel uncomfortable or not satisfied with the book is the part where Hsun Ching was force to join the Red Army. The time frame and things around there felt rather "brief" . Could have do without that part. Just write about the mystical part and their travel to Hong Kong and San Francisco would have been much better.
Overall am giving it 4 stars out of 5.
at 11:13 AM