China Through the Eyes of a Tiger

Roland Sperry, Author Pocket Books $4.95 (294p) ISBN 978-0-671-66942-3
Thickly applied technique can wreck a good story, and this true account of a downed American fighter pilot making his way through the Chinese countryside in WW II amid the fearsome presence of the occupying Japanese reads more like the screenplay for a Bogart film. Boodman, a television scriptwriter, helps former Flying Tiger Sperry recall each event in such mannered phrasing that the representation seems arty (``The multi-colored necklace of Hong Kong appeared below'') rather than lifelike. But beneath the overwritten exterior lies a satisfying human-interest story about Sperry's friendship with two Chinese peasants bent on escaping the poverty and terror of their native village. The danger to the fugitive party as well as the culture shock to Sperry and two American companions met en route emerge clearly, but what shines forth most is the casual bravery and relentless good humor of the little band. (Jan.)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1990
Release date: 01/01/1990
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