I got approved through Net Galley to read an advanced copy of this book ahead of its release on the 1st of February. I was totally drawn to this book by its pretty cover and enticed by the mysterious crime novel set in the exciting environment of Hong Kong.
Let me start off by saying, I struggled to get into this book, there are a lot of characters and storylines and the mystery of the book is maybe wound up a little bit too tightly as I didn’t even know what was actually going on.
The Colour Of Thunder starts with a shooting at an orphanage which you don’t learn much about, then takes you to the story of multiple different people; Johnny, Scarlet, Alice, Carolyn and Wang. It isn’t until maybe about 50-60% through that you finally get a glimpse of how the shooting fits in. I guess it’s just set up quite strange because I was expecting the shooting to be an integral part of the story but actually it was almost just a side story.
The core of this book surrounds a Euroasian man called Johnny who had a tough up bringing in East London but moved to Hong Kong to make his fortunes. He’s now a successful businessman but everybody expects that his hands are dirty. He also has a honcho called Phil; who I definitely imaged being like Phil Mitchell, who is a known drug user and violent man. Scarlett, Johnny’s girlfriend is trying to gain entry to a safe in his house, a PI called Felicity befriends Johnny’s counsellor Carolyn to try to gain insight on him and Scarlett’s friend Alice knows some of his chequered past.
I feel like just as you’re finally starting to learn something the perspective of the book changes and jumps to something totally different. And I still don’t actually understand how Wang and his politics really comes into the story so if you’ve read it and understand please let me know!
All in all, this definitely wasn’t my favourite book. Although it DEFINITELY got better from about the 40% mark and I did read the second half of the book on pretty much one sitting. I feel like maybe I need some more reflective time to think about it and perhaps a fellow reader to talk it through with!