Spy thrillers are expected to give you a white knuckled ride and keep you on the edge of your seat. The Great Leap Forward will not keep you on the edge of your seat. It will most likely knock you off your seat….with mirth.
The book is a satire on spy thrillers and yet also raises interesting and serious points for debate. The book is about an intrepid spy’s investigation in China in the 1970s to see how much of an opportunity or threat that country poses to the world. This is China in the 70s when it was even more insular than it is today and when the West was desperate to know what it was like. What the spy finds and reports back has as many layers to it as an onion has.
The book is like a Pink Panther in China, peopled with oddball characters that tickle your interest and the narrative goes at a pace that keeps you engrossed in the book.
Read it. This is a refreshingly different book that will stay long in your memory and will make you eager for the next offering from Burke.