Wednesday, 19 March 2014

The Tesseract - Alex Garland - 4/5

The Tesseract by Alex Garland (of 'The Beach' fame) took me quite a while to read. Not because it was a poor novel but because I had been busy moving to London and settling into my new job in the capital.

However, as the circular narrative progresses I found myself becoming more and more intrigued by the various characters that were fighting the every day struggle in the Manila shanty towns.

The story begins with the battle of English businessman Sean against Manila's very own Godfather Don Pepe. As the story progresses, Garland gives a snapshot of each subdivision of Filipino street culture - from the island girls to street kids Vicente and Totoy - embroiled in psychological and philosophical discussion with Alfredo (a Filipino Fagan without the street robbery).

The narrative occasionally separates itself from the reader's consciousness making it, at times, difficult to follow the wide array of characters but by the end I hoped that there was another 100 pages to read as I approached my tube stop.

I picked this up in a charity shop in Finsbury Park and it was well worth the £1.

Price: 5/5

Story: 3/5

Journey Improvement: 4/5

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