Title / The Night Tiger
Author / Yangsze Choo
Publication Date / February 2019
Series or standalone / Standalone
Page no. / 480
Overall Rating / ★★★.5
This is a historical fiction set in Malaya (Malaysia) during the 1930’s. It is a dual perspective story following a 11 year old boy called Ren and a young woman called Ji Lin. These two characters stories are interconnected by a severed finger in a vial that Ji Lin finds. The severed finger belongs to Ren’s former master and he has 49 days to retrieve the finger, so it can be reunited with the rest of his master’s body. If Ren fails, his master is doomed to forever roam earth as a spirit.
The Night Tiger is heavily influenced by Chinese superstition and folklore. These elements of this book were so well done and I found it really interesting to learn more about folklore from different countries, in this case Chinese folklore. The author has done a fantastic job at weaving these elements into the story, while also creating a suspenseful atmosphere that runs throughout the book. There are a lot of wonderfully written passages and vivid descriptions that make it so easy to become immersed in the setting of Malaya. Choo also did a great job at slowly unveiling the mystery throughout the book, while maintaining the tension. It did take me a little while to settle into the flow of the writing but after a couple of chapters I was invested in the story and characters. It does start quite slow but stick with it as it does pick up a bit. While I enjoyed the plot overall, it did drag a little at times.
In terms of the characters, they were all well written with complex personalities and interesting back stories. Both Ren and Ji Lin were great protagonists, although some of the secondary characters lacked a little depth. It was also a little tricky at times keeping track of all the characters. One small issue I had was the romance part of the story for one character. The man turns out to be possessive and controlling, which I’m really not a fan of. I’ve read some other reviews and no one seems to be bothered by it but I wanted to mention it in my review.
Overall I really enjoyed this book and I’m definitely interested in checking out the authors other books. If you enjoy historical fiction mixed with magical realism then I highly recommend reading this book. I also really like the cover of this one. Have you guys read this book? I’d love to know what you thought. I hope you are all having a wonderful day and I will see you next time.