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Decoded: A Novel par [Jia, Mai]
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Decoded: A Novel Format Kindle

3.3 étoiles sur 5 4 commentaires client

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Longueur : 254 pages Word Wise: Activé Composition améliorée: Activé
Page Flip: Activé Langue : Anglais

Description du produit

Revue de presse

A mixture of Kafka and Agatha Christie . . . One of the joys of Decoded is its rich evocation of Chinese culture . . . What is this book really about? The clue is in the title. This book is more about Jiang 'decoding' himself than breaking enemy encryption. It is an autobiography operating under the cover of spy fiction - and an utterly fascinating read . . . Olivia Milburn's translation is superb (Edward Wilson The Independent)

The novel shines in its consideration of the ambiguous difficulties of living with such brilliance . . . Decoded is compelling for its tightly wrought aphorisms, elegantly turned in Olivia Milburn's translation . . . An engaging and highly unusual read (Sunday Independent)

FINALLY, a great Chinese novel . . . This strange, twisting tale is told in fizzy, vivid and often beautiful prose. It is an absolute joy to read (Economist)

Decoded is a subtle and complex exploration of cryptography, politics, dreams and their significance . . . There is much of interest in this book, from the strange, superstitious beginning to the gradual decline of the Rong family as the twentieth century progresses . . . But in the end, it's the complexity of the characters that is Decoded's enduring pleasure (London Review of Books)

Strongly recalls One Hundred Years of Solitude, only this time with the tapestry stitched in silk (Sunday Business Post)

The book's subtle ambiguity is extended to its own conclusion, the decoding of which the reader is compelled to take part in. As for the shrewd, poetic, baffled figure at the heart of this maze, Rong Jinzhen comes to perceive the yin and yang of a cosmic order offering not much consolation (Wall Street Journal)

Subtle and psychologically focused . . . the central story is a gripping one . . . it leaves you eager to read more of his work (Alexander Larman The Observer)

Présentation de l'éditeur

Decoded tells the story of Rong Jinzhwen, one of the great code-breakers in the world.

A semi-autistic mathematical genius, Jinzhen is recruited to the cryptography department of China's secret services, Unit 701, where he is assigned the task of breaking the elusive 'Code Purple'. Jinzhen rises through the ranks to eventually become China's greatest and most celebrated code-breaker; until he makes a mistake. Then begins his descent through the unfathomable darkness of the world of cryptology into madness.

Decoded was an immediate success when it was published in 2002 in China and has become an international bestseller. With the pacing of a literary crime thriller, Mai Jia's masterpiece also combines elements of historical fiction and state espionage. Taking place in the shadowy world of Chinese secret security, where Mai Jia worked for decades, it introduces us to a place that is unfamiliar, intriguing and authentic. And with Rong Jinzhen, it introduces us to a character who is deeply flawed and fragile, yet possessing exceptional intelligence. Decoded is an unforgettable and gripping story of genius, brilliance, insanity and human frailty.

Mai Jia (the pseudonym of Jiang Benhu) is arguably the most successful writer in China today. His books are constant bestsellers, with total sales over three million copies. He became the highest paid author in China last year with his new book, Wind Talk. He has achieved unprecedented success with film adaptation: all of his novels are made - or are being made - into major films or TV series, the screenplays of which are often written by Mai Jia himself. He is hailed as the forerunner of Chinese espionage fiction, and has created a unique genre that combines spycraft, code-breaking, crime, human drama, historical fiction, and metafiction. He has won almost every major award in China, including the highest literary honor - the Mao Dun Award.


Détails sur le produit

  • Format : Format Kindle
  • Taille du fichier : 958 KB
  • Nombre de pages de l'édition imprimée : 254 pages
  • Pagination - ISBN de l'édition imprimée de référence : 0374135800
  • Editeur : Penguin (12 mars 2014)
  • Vendu par : Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Langue : Anglais
  • ASIN: B00ED6HLU4
  • Synthèse vocale : Activée
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  • Word Wise: Activé
  • Lecteur d’écran : Pris en charge
  • Composition améliorée: Activé
  • Moyenne des commentaires client : 3.2 étoiles sur 5 4 commentaires client
  • Classement des meilleures ventes d'Amazon: n°150.543 dans la Boutique Kindle (Voir le Top 100 dans la Boutique Kindle)
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Commentaires en ligne

3.3 étoiles sur 5

Meilleurs commentaires des clients

Par Denis Urval COMMENTATEUR DU HALL D'HONNEURTOP 50 COMMENTATEURS le 11 novembre 2015
Format: Relié
Commençons par le commencement : il ne faut pas confondre Ma Jian et Mai Jia !

Ma Jian est né en 1946 à Qingdao, dans la province du Shandong. Il a publié en 2009 Beijing coma, un roman dédié au souvenir des événements de juin 1989, interdit en Chine.

Mai Jia, de son vrai nom Jiang Benhu, est né en 1964 bien plus au sud, dans la prospère province du Zhejiang. Il a fait ses études de littérature dans une Académie militaire située à Pékin et il est demeuré ensuite membre de l'armée chinoise pendant seize ans. Revenu à la vie civile en 1997, il a écrit des romans qui se sont beaucoup vendus en Chine. Il est depuis 2010 vice-président de la très officielle Association pour les arts et les lettres de cette province. Decoded (2005) est son premier livre traduit en anglais.

Decoded est un roman inclassable et pour moi son large succès ne fait qu'épaissir le mystère, car malgré les tentatives pour le présenter comme ce qu'on appelle en anglais un « page turner » (un livre dont on tourne les pages compulsivement, du fait de son intrigue et du suspens afférent), il s'agit en fait de tout autre chose. Son héros Rong Jinzhen, est certes un mathématicien devenu cryptographe travaillant pour le renseignement chinois, mais voir dans Decoded un roman d'espionnage de plus serait complètement réducteur et erroné.
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Un livre déroutant, qui empile les couches les unes sur les autres comme pour en rendre le décryptage plus ardu et plus passionnant à la fois. Rong Jinzhen restera finalement une énigme. Mai Jia nous fait voyager à travers les périodes pré et post révolutionnaire, puis dans les arcanes de la "NSA chinoise", avec une liberté de ton étonnante. Les rupture de style entre les différentes parties renforcent encore le plaisir de la lecture. Bref, à découvrir, puis à relire.
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Ce roman est une biographie d'un cryptographe chinois fictif. La construction est intéressante, parfois déroutante, éloignée des habitudes occidentales.

Le problème principal à mon goût est la description de la cryptographie (et des math), qui semble bien éloignée de la réalité (si encore l'histoire se passait avant la seconde guerre mondiale...) et ne fait pas grand sens. Pour un lecteur qui ne connaît pas ce domaine, ce n'est pas forcément gênant cependant.
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could be my inability to hook into the translation
i'm fine with other books translated from chinese- though always depends on author and translate
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Commentaires client les plus utiles sur Amazon.com (beta) (Peut contenir des commentaires issus du programme Early Reviewer Rewards)

Amazon.com: 3.6 étoiles sur 5 146 commentaires
2 internautes sur 2 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
1.0 étoiles sur 5 I wish I had started reading it right away so I could have returned it. 5 octobre 2016
Par D.E. - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Format Kindle Achat vérifié
I made a big mistake with this book- I purchased the Kindle version and rather than start reading it within a day or so, I waited two or three weeks and so I couldn't return it to Amazon. The author spends half the book developing the background for his character and then ... nothing happens. Nothing at all. The author apparently knows nothing about cryptography, and he knows nothing about mathematics or artificial intelligence. The later two topics are important subjects in the story's development. This book is so tedious that while relative short, I have had to read the last half over a period of three week and I still have the "Notebooks" section to read ... 30 pages or so which I hope to complete 3 pages a morning just before I read what I really want to read....If I had purchased a cheap used paperback i would have thrown it away long ago. Just awful. The analogies, the philosophical ruminations on cryptography are simply nonsense, pure dribble.
4.0 étoiles sur 5 How I Came to Know Cryptography. 30 juillet 2016
Par History Major - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
I knew this was a novel translated from the Chinese and did not expect it to follow western rules of writing. As a novelist myself, dedicated to making sure the point of view presented was always appropriate, I found my self shocked on the one hand by the way it was presented, and amazed that it seemed to make little difference as I worked my way through it. Nevertheless, knowing it had been written first in Chinese, I was prepared to forgive the author's drifting between individuals. The story was compelling. And the writing, because it was a narrative from beginning to end, managed to keep my attention throughout. I am not prepared, as some professionals have done, to accept that this was all planned out before hand. Yes, Mai Jia is a very well respected novelist, but this seemed much like a make it up as you go sort of thing. That he pulled it off is nothing less than amazing.

Stories of code breaking during WWII tend to focus around the Enigma machine, where rotors were used to change the letters in random ways, such that it was thought impossible to break the code. Even with one of the machines in your possession, it still required an analyst to decipher where the rotors must have been at the time of any message. By the end of the war, British and American specialists were reading the enemy's mail faster than the enemy; and with the advent of the massive computers built to do the work, a entirely new industry was born. I felt a bit odd wondering about this as I read how far behind the Chinese were in in 1956 decoding the Purple and Black codes with nothing but one man's brain to do the work. Those codes would have been easy at that time for the Americans to read. Nevertheless, this was a fascinating read and I bow to Mai Jia's style. I hope to see more from him.

Charming Billy Welcome to my newest novel, a story of romance during the Battle of Britain.
2 internautes sur 2 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Top notch reading from an ingenius author, Five Star Plus 27 septembre 2014
Par Chenfan Wang - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Relié Achat vérifié
Update: This is the 3rd time I'm buying this book. I gave to my cousins for gifts and they all loved it.

Decoded: A Novel is a great book, definitely worth reading, and inspiring. Mai Jia is a fantastic writer who have pictured a vivid image of the mysterious Chinese intelligent agency "701". His words perfectly depicted the old time China, the glorious age when people fight and die for their dream. Even for outsiders who are not particularly familiar with China in last century, this book provide a unique opportunity to find out. As a matter of fact, Mai Jia has created many successful characters in his past works. Some of them been taken to TV and big screen. But this is no doubt his best work so far. He has advanced his personal thrilling style into a new high.

The key to reading this novel is to trust where is author leading you, even though at first many things seems relevant and blabbering. (many find it very easy because even the first sections are intriguing!) As the story develops, you will find all the pieces been put together and make a great and suprising big picture.
2 internautes sur 2 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 “Every ugly toad thinks that sooner or later he is going to get to eat the meat of a swan.” 18 avril 2014
Par Mary Whipple - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Relié Achat vérifié
Mai Jia, a popular novelist and winner of the Mao Dun Literature Prize, China’s highest literary honor, writes here under a pen name after serving for seventeen years as a member of the People’s Liberation Army and its intelligence services. Decoded, originally written and published for a Chinese audience in 2002, and newly translated and published in English, provides a fascinating study of cryptography and its dedicated cryptographers, many of whom give their lives (and even their sanity) to their work. The exciting and revelatory translation by Olivia Milburn and Christopher Payne provides new insights into worlds that have been closed to most of us, not just the hidden world of cryptography and the psychological toll it takes on those who dedicate their lives to it, but also the world of the People’s Republic of China and the thinking of many of its people.

Astonishing in its focus on the travails and inner torments of one major character, Rong Jinzhen, the novel features a psychological, individualized approach, something I did not expect for characters living within the group culture of China, especially among characters from the army and its secret intelligence services. An orphan who grows up within two adoptive homes, Rong Jinzhen, known in childhood as “Duckling,” is a mathematical genius, called “Idiot Savvy” in school, but he never stops feeling isolated and apart, however praised he might be for his brilliance and dedication to intellectual goals. He counts ants, the days that his “Daddy” has lived on earth before his death at age eighty-eight, invents his own multiplication tables, and becomes a chess player at the highest level of competition.

The older and more dedicated he becomes to what he is learning, however, the more preoccupied – even autistic – he becomes. With his lively mind focused totally on intellectual goals, he evokes our concern as he fails to make friends or find any happiness or inner peace. When he is eventually selected to work as a cryptographer for the state, he must leave behind everything he has ever known to participate at a remote and secret location on a project which will eventually consume him – the deciphering of PURPLE, the most difficult cipher ever created. Once Rong Jinzhen (often called Zhendi by those who remember him) disappears into Unit 701, he is essentially lost to everyone else who has known him as he works to break this code for his country.

The remainder of the novel appears in the form of interviews with two people, Master Rong, a female member of his family whom he saved during the Cultural Revolution, and Director Zheng, the man who persuaded him to join the cryptography unit. These interviews convey Jinzhen’s history and his story, but they feature much “telling about” the action, instead of creating lively stories told from “inside the moment.” The author’s use of dreams, often disorderly, reveal Jinzhen’s state of mind, and a shift in style from narrative to Jinzhen’s internal reveries to convey his inner turmoil in the middle section of the novel show his alarming changes. A literary novel, unique in its focus, setting, and subject matter, Decoded lives up to its title, providing exciting new insights into many aspects of life in the People’s Republic of China - and if a reader also happens to be a mathematician or serious games player¬, this novel will be utterly irresistible.
3.0 étoiles sur 5 Meh 22 janvier 2016
Par Julian Douglass - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Relié Achat vérifié
It was meh. I decided to buy the book because of its review in The Economist, which highlights good books to read, but it seemed to be built up on a different interpretation of thriller. The first part of the novel seems to build up the fact that there is some secret within the family bloodline and that Rong Jinzhen would uncover some startling truth that could "save" the Chinese state. But no.

For starters, the summary on the inside makes it seem as there is some big secret that only Rong Jinzhen can seem to solve, and it turns out to be a dud. The two most surprising details of the book are almost glossed over and if you are not paying attention, you might miss it. There was never really a why as to what was Rong's purpose, and the end just happened. Maybe the Chinese and West versions of thriller seem to differ, but I finished the book with a "eh" instead of a "Oh my god!!!".

However, the book does do a good job of mixing in history, mathematics and storytelling.
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