The story depends heavily on how much Christopher remembers and how much he trusts his own memories. If there’s such a thing as perfect recall, then Christopher failed miserably on that account. But it doesn’t mean Christopher was insincere with his narration. On the contrary, his sincerity and deep desire to adhere with his task are his best qualities. So, the book is not an inspection of human honesty. This is an intuitive examination of the fraudulent nature of memory, the prejudice of perception, and the reader’s inclination to become lost in the inaccuracy of the narrator’s tale.
Important. Very important. Nostalgic. When we nostalgic, we remember. A world better than this world we discover when we grow. We remember and wish good world come back again. So very important.
Slowly, WHEN WE WERE ORPHANS turns into a pounding thriller. The revelation was both gripping and profound. It was difficult to hold emotions after the full horror of what happened to Christopher’s mother was revealed. The unfairness of one woman’s struggle to uphold her son in a crazy world filled with deceit and ruthlessness.
Between the lines of this whole story, wherein Christopher and his parents were viciously caught in, are the evil manipulations of the British trading companies who wanted to suppress an entire nation by making them opium addicts, and their connivance with the Chinese war lords. Perhaps, this is indeed one of the shameful parts of British history.
After all, when we were children, when things went wrong, there wasn’t much we could do to help put it right. But now we’re adults, now we can. That’s the thing, you see? Look at us, Akira. After all this time, we can finally put things right.