Skip to main content

The Buried Giant by Kazuo Ishiguro

Super Saturday Book Review - The Buried Giant by Kazuo Ishiguro

Before going into the review I want to tell you how I came across this book. Well, as some of you know I live in Surabaya, Indonesia and you would think that you wouldn't be able to get a hold of many books in English, but that isn't true. Surprisingly, Indonesians love reading books in English. 

So I spotted this book about a year ago in the book store and just loved the cover at first sight, picked it up and found out that it takes place in about 6th century Britain sometime after King Arthur's death. I absolutely love this time period. So I eventually picked it up after passing by it too many times in the bookstore buying other books on my wishlist. 

I may have read and reviewed this much later than most people but I have to say it was definitely worth the time put into this book. With no further wait, here's BookMattic's review of The Buried Giant.

BookMattic's Rating: 
3 stars

Goodreads' Rating: 
3.41 stars

Set in 6th century Britain, The Buried Giant follows an old Briton couple, Axl and Beatrice, across their homeland in search of their long lost son whom they have not seen in who knows how long, they don't even know due to the land being invaded by a mysterious mist which robs the inhabitants of most of their long term memories and even some short term ones too. What causes this mist? How will the old yet persistent protagonists beat this mist down so they can remember where their son resides? 

Somehow Axl and Beatrice's memory of their son has not been forgotten. This is one thing that we know throughout the book, Beatrice will not give up on looking for her son.

So the premise of The Buried Giant by Kazuo Ishiguro is fairly simple yet there are many intricacies that make this book worthwhile to read. One of those was the main character, Axl. I really loved Axl! He was portrayed as an elderly man, but had a fire burning deep inside him which gave him a power that you wouldn't expect from an old man. He was always there to protect his sweet elderly wife, Beatrice. 

The Buried Giant would be completely different without the supporting characters and the other intricacies that I would like to mention in this review. Wistan the Saxon warrior, sent by his king in the Fens to investigate Britain, was a wonderful addition to this story with his cunning strength and wise beyond his years, the book would not have been the same without him. Plus he had a key role in helping Axl and Beatrice.

Then there was the ancient knight in creaky armour, Sir Gawain, also another Briton and nephew to the late King Arthur. Kazuo Ishiguro was brilliant bringing this old knight into the book as well as adding some actual true history. His character was very tired from long years of serving Arthur even after his death and also had a sensitivity to his past. He also played a major role in helping Axl and Beatrice.

There were only a few things that I was disappointed with. One was Ishiguro's use of the word princess. I guess he couldn't think of any other words of endearment for Axl to call his wife. Axl would always find a way to call Beatrice princess. I literally mean ALWAYS! That got a bit annoying. Also the book is categorized as fantasy but it doesn't quite feel like fantasy until about a third of the way through.

Other than that I felt that Ishiguro's writing style and descriptive language were compelling and drew a good picture in my mind about the atmosphere in the lives of these characters and the land of Britons and Saxon people. I'm curious to know if Ishiguro plans on making a second book to this maybe following one of the supporting characters. I would snatch up a copy instantly if that were the case. Overall I recommend this book to fans of fantasy and 6th century era Britain.



Comments

  1. Is English your second language? Lots of grammar mistakes and repetition of words.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. No one is perfect, but I think you might have to check on your ability before you judge someone else's. Not to say that you have bad grammar or don't know how to write since I've never seen any of your works of 'perfect grammar', but it seems like you're passing your judgement on me too soon and sarcastically. If you don't have any constructive feedback for me then don't bother. But if you do then you're more than welcome to comment anytime you want.

      Delete
    2. Sorry to have sounded sarcastic.
      Here is some constructive feedback. Hope it helps your English development:
      Paragraph 1 (of review proper)
      an old "British" couple. Britain is the geographical location, British is the nationality.
      where there son "resides". A judge presides.
      Para.6 There "were" only a few things. "things" is a countable, plural noun.
      ..about a third "of" the way....
      Para.7 I'm curious "to know if"....
      "writing" a book.

      Please take this in the way it is intended, to help you with your English. You are obviously a pretty competent user, but still make a few basic mistakes. With practice and a good grammar book I'm sure you will improve.

      Delete
    3. Great pointers, and I have to admit that I missed them. Next time I'll be more careful when editing my posts and have them proofread by someone else. It is easy to make those mistakes, and they are small ones at that. Believe me, there are people out there with worse grammar.

      I do have to say though 'Unknown' user that for your first point I understand about Britain and British of course, but I meant to use the term the book used, Briton. I'll edit it.

      Thanks again for your input. Other than the small grammarical mistakes, what did you think of the review?

      Delete

Post a Comment

Popular Posts in the Last Month

Top 8 Content Bloggers You Should Read Daily

No matter where you are in this world, how old you are, or how you were raised, unless you’re a pro and have been at blogging for years upon years then you still need someone in your life to help you along.
Even pro content bloggers need to continue learning about the ever-changing landscape of the internet and technology, daily. That means if you’re just starting out then you need to learn extra hard and keep on practicing the new blogging techniques you acquire.

That is why I’ve put together a list of 8 blogs ranging from big names like Forbes and Huffington Post down to more niche-specific sites like Blogging From Paradise, to help you out with your own blogging troubles. The list of blogs is in the order of frequency that I read them in. Meaning that the #1 blog on my list is one I practically read every day because his content is so amazing and detailed.

Related Post:Blogger's Content Guide: Write With Heart

I highly recommend reading at least one of these articles from any of t…

Bye-Bye Blogger - Hello WordPress

Hey, my fellow book lovers! I'm not going to take too much of your time today. I want to express my frustration with Blogger and the fact that very soon I'll be buying my own domain and moving over to WordPress since I have outgrown the amateur blogger stage.
It was fun while it lasted Blogger, you showed me the ropes of what it's like to be a blogger and gave me a glimpse of the bright future that is coming my way. Thank you, Blogger, for all the things you've taught me along the way.
But now it's time for me to move on because people don't take your platform seriously, Blogger. As I've read from several sources, advertisers won't take a second look at Blogger blogs.
The way to go is Wordpress. So, I'm sorry Blogger, but by next week I'll be moving all my posts over to Wordpress and never come back.
For the people that have been following my posts, I'm happy to say that this will be a big step for us. I'm hoping you follow me over to Wordpr…

6 Eclectic HIGH Fantasy and HARD Sci-Fi Titles You Won't Want to Miss

Over the past week or so I’ve been finding myself craving some high fantasy and hard sci-fi. There’s been way too much YA fluff out there lately and I miss the days of reading something that truly sucks you into the story and opens your imagination.
So I thought it would be nice to look a little forward into the future and find 3 high fantasy novels and 3 hard sci-fi novels to enlighten your future reading schedule.
All of the titles I picked are due to be released in January 2018. None of them are YA novels. And all of them are the first in their series or stand-alone books. You may have noticed that trilogies have been the trend for the past decade or longer. Sometimes it’s good just to have a stand-alone book that really stands out. Not that I don’t like trilogies or series. It’s just nice to change the pace up once in awhile if you know what I mean.
When a stand-alone book is done well it’s usually the best quality of all other books like it. Now, I had a bit of a hard time while si…

Trek Into A Singular Destiny

I don't know about you but I really do love Star Trek but I'm not a fanatic like some people out there that get into their full Klingon getup or paste on their Vulcan ears and go to Comicon. Not that it's wrong to do that. I've done it myself once or twice back when I was a teenager.

I didn't dress up though but I did get a chance to meet Nicelle Nichols who played Uhura in TOS. She's such a sweetheart and beautiful despite her age. I also met George Takei (Sulu, TOS) who since then has come back into stardom. Maybe not as much as back in the day, but I'd have to say he was a fun guy to meet in person.

There's a little history about Star Trek and I, although there's tons more stories to tell which I may just write a separate post for that. What do you think, would you like to hear more about my story? Let me know in the Disqus comments below. 

Now onto the main content of the post.


Stardate 94984.8
Historian's Note
This novel commences in late April 2…

START WITH WHY: Give Yourself A Reason For Everything You Do

This book was amazing! START WITH WHY blew my mind. Why did START WITH WHY blow my mind? Well, it has pretty much changed my perspective on why I do things. Mainly why I’m starting my own business, but also why I spend time reading or watching my favorite program. From now on even the littlest things can START WITH WHY in my life! The concept is fairly simple yet has so much power. Simon Sinek did a thorough job of explaining the importance of WHY and how it can help put your business ahead of others. It's not all about being a leader in business though, it's also about building a connection between you, and your following. The clarity of WHY shines brighter and longer than any HOW or WHAT. The examples of how Apple has dominated technology are because of WHY the company is in business. What makes Apple stand out?


It's not WHAT Apple makes, or HOW they make it. The reason why they have such a loyal following is because of WHY they make their products. Apple is used as the mai…

4 Benefits of Exercise On Your Brain: How Your Productivity and Motivation Improves

Everyone out there is trying to accomplish their dreams and make their life better in some way or another whether it be picking up an old or new hobby, gaining more knowledge, starting their own business, or becoming fit.

For those of you that know me already, you know that I’ve been a competitive runner since I was 10. I’m 32 now, so I’ve had 22 years of running experience and know how much work it takes to get your body in shape to run that extra mile, literally. But for those of you that rarely exercise you may not know that getting your body in shape not only helps your body to become muscular but also helps your brain to think quickly and build on your existing synapses.


I know this for a fact not only from scientific research but also from personal experience. Having a healthy body will also give you a healthy brain.

Here are some applicable thoughts on exercise and the benefits it has on your brain. Faster Cognitive Capabilities Exercises such as running or cycling help oxygen ge…

Blogger's Content Guide: Write With Heart

Yes, right now I’m here at my keyboard typing to you. Yes, YOU, that’s right. If you’re reading this post you are most likely trying to come up with ideas on how to engage better with amazing content with your regular and new blog readers. This is something that seems difficult, but with time, effort and a few ingredients for success you can almost easily overcome this obstacle.

I’ve been at this serious blogging thing for over eight months now and sometimes I still find it hard to come up with ideas for my next post. I question myself ‘Why are you having such a hard time, Matt? It shouldn’t be that difficult!’
Truthfully, it can be difficult to find just the right topic for a post that will attract the right audience. That is one of the trickiest parts of the whole blogging thing. You’re not just writing for yourself, but also all the people interested in the topic you write about as well as all the people that have access to the world wide web.
As a blogger, you have to reach out to you…

The Million Dollar Blog - Blogging Essentials For a Successful Blog

I had no idea blogging could be a successful career, did you? At first my blog, maybe like many of you bloggers out there just started out as a hobby, kind of a spur of the moment thing that you enjoy doing. But now, for me is way more than just a hobby. 
Blogging has turned into my ambition to build a successful business. I still have a long way to go, and I'm going to do my best and never give up on providing quality content for my readers. For some it's hard to get people to engage with your blog, for others it's a sinch, but for EVERYONE it's a matter of process and nothing in the blogosphere happens all at once. 

I would like you to come along with me on this journey of discovery and hope you have just as much fun as me along the way of finding out how to engage audiences in a meaningful conversation about a specific niche, which for me is about books. But I'll cover more on this gushy stuff later because now we have to get into the review.


'The Million Dollar…

10 Reasons Why You Should Read Books Everyday - Part 2

I hope you all enjoyed 10 Reasons Why You Should Read Books Everyday - Part 1 and now for the second part as I promised.

As you may have seen around you that the majority of people don't read books everyday. I know our schedules tend to be busy but I think it's important for you to realize how important it is to create a habit of reading books everyday even if it's only for 15 minutes.

Here are the next five reasons why (in no particular order):
6Reading is fun.
Actually this is the best reason ever to read books everyday! This is probably the top reason for those of you that do read, and no doubt it really is a good one.

Why else would we read if it weren't fun? Well, actually there are several reasons in this list. I don't think this one really needs an explanation. 
7Reading is better than watching movies. Please don't get me wrong about books or movies but I think this goes the same for most of you out there (or maybe not) but anyway, I LOVE MOVIES!

I guess both ha…

Marketing Points From The Tipping Point

The Tipping Point is not what I was expecting it to be especially since it was referred to in Contagious by Jonah Berger(reviewed here). While reading ‘Contagious’ Berger mentions ‘The Tipping Point’ as one of his inspirations to write his book which is much more oriented towards having an effective marketing strategy. I have seen Gladwell’s books several times in the business book section at my local bookstore here in Surabaya but what I didn't realize about the book before I bought it was that it isn't specifically about business.
Yes, some concepts in ‘The Tipping Point’ can be applied to your marketing business plan but Gladwell didn't write it for entrepreneurs. He wrote this for the average person. It's harsh but true. I’d say it's more about the result of a study into why certain things spread and others don't. There's very little mention about how to apply the research to your own life.

The majority of the content goes into epidemic viruses, smoking, a…