Brothers

Brothers❴Download❵ ➶ Brothers Author Yu Hua – Jobs-in-kingston.co.uk A bestseller in China, recently short listed for the Man Asian Literary Prize, and a winner of France s Prix Courrier International, Brothers is an epic and wildly unhinged black comedy of modern Chin A bestseller in China, recently short listed for the Man Asian Literary Prize, and a winner of France s Prix Courrier International, Brothers is an epic and wildly unhinged black comedy of modern Chinese society running amokHere is China as we ve never seen it, in a sweeping, Rabelaisian panorama of forty years of rough and rumble Chinese history that has already scandalized millions of readers in the author s homeland Yu Hua, award winning author of To Live, gives us a surreal tale of two Brothers riding the dizzying roller coaster of life in a newly capitalist world As comically mismatched teenagers, Baldy Li, a sex obsessed ne er do well, and Song Gang, his bookish, sensitive stepbrother, vow that they will always be Brothers a bond they will struggle to maintain over the years as they weather the ups and downs of rivalry in love and making and losing millions in the new China Their tribulations play out across a richly populated backdrop that is every bit as vibrant the rapidly changing village of Liu Town, full of such lively characters as the self important Poet Zhao, the craven dentist Yanker Yu, the virginal town beauty turned madam Lin Hong, and the simpering vendor Popsicle WangWith sly and biting humor, combined with an insightful and compassionate eye for the lives of ordinary people, Yu Hua shows how the madness of the Cultural Revolution has transformed into the equally rabid madness of extreme materialism Both tragic and absurd by turns, Brothers is a monumental spectacle and a fascinating vision of an extraordinary place and time. To begin with, a poorly devised haiku review Yu s roller coaster Is careless with emotions.Like a bad girlfriend________________I m not really sure what to make of Brothers I liked it, that much is certain.The story is expansive and the characters indelible The insight into the development of Chinese culture over the last four decades was enlightening The episodes related were heartfelt, both funny and tragic And sometimes even both simultaneously I was involved for the book s entirety wh To begin with, a poorly devised haiku review Yu s roller coaster Is careless with emotions.Like a bad girlfriend________________I m not really sure what to make of Brothers I liked it, that much is certain.The story is expansive and the characters indelible The insight into the development of Chinese culture over the last four decades was enlightening The episodes related were heartfelt, both funny and tragic And sometimes even both simultaneously I was involved for the book s entirety which was not insubstantial.The problem, I guess, is twofold 1 I can t tell if the writing was simplistic and somewhat stilted by design or by translation and 2 the extremism of Yu s emotional roller coaster reminds one of the formulaic approach of self important tear jerkers that mob the cineplex every Fall So far as the writing goes, it wasa curiosity than a bother If the style was due to translator inadequacy, then I suppose I should feel a little ripped off not getting anything close to the full expression of the author s intended work , but if the style was the author s choice and the translators indeed faithfully transmitted Yu s text into the book I read, then I find the choice fascinating If the text was truly intended to be as simplistic as it was, then perhaps the semantic and grammatical choices fit the story Liu Town, where the principal action occurs is certainly provincial and a place in which education is of the smallest of concerns It then makes a kind of sense that the narrative should echo the voice of the story s inhabitants.Emotionally, Brothers may be one of the saddest funny books I ve ever read I laughed a lot mostly due to the ridiculousness of the town s many inhabitants and most especially because of the proclamations of the principal brother, Baldy Li Still, the story carriesthan its share of tragedies And these aren t just garden variety tragedies either Brothers can be brutal as it destroys lives without tact or conscience Perhaps this too is a reflection of the world in which our the brothers dwell, an echo of the terror both loud and quiet that the last half century of China s history and culture have wrought in the lives of its citizens In any case, I don t know if I ve ever feltmournful while reading a novel Which of course makes me suspect it Brothers develops alongside the lives of two step brothers orproperly, brothers from about 1960 onward These brothers weather the terrible years of the Cultural Revolution and the mortal fear Chairman Mao s movement instilled in the nation They struggle through the years following and look for opportunities in thecapitalistic China that would grow out of the revolutionary era Their differing temperaments and philosophies of life offer breadth to the tale, allowing readers tocompletely apprehend China and its culture Yu focuses much of his effort exploring the depths of human folly and the sewer stain of humanity s soul, only occasionally revealing the purity of true love and camaraderie throughout And of course those moments shine all thebrightly due their depraved surroundings I don t know exactly what Yu thinks of the human being, but I suspect that he doesn t think much of it though he seems willing to be surprised by its moments of joy and beauty No real spoilers below I left all the surprise parts outBaldi Li never met his father, who died on the day he was born, drowned in a cesspit of the public toilets, where he was peeping at the women next door When his mother married Song Fangping, Song Gang, who was eight one year older than Baldy Li, became his brother.When the Cultural revolution started, Baldy Li s mother was in hospital in Shanghai, and life was very hard, as Song Fangping was a school teacher, and therefore a class e No real spoilers below I left all the surprise parts outBaldi Li never met his father, who died on the day he was born, drowned in a cesspit of the public toilets, where he was peeping at the women next door When his mother married Song Fangping, Song Gang, who was eight one year older than Baldy Li, became his brother.When the Cultural revolution started, Baldy Li s mother was in hospital in Shanghai, and life was very hard, as Song Fangping was a school teacher, and therefore a class enemy He was humiliated and beaten, and then imprisoned This left Song Gang and Baldi Li to fend for themselves Picked on by others, it was a hard life, and the brothers had to look out for each other.In the book we follow their lives from childhood to old age in the present day written 2006 We are introduced to the main characters of Liu Town where they live and follow the path of China from before the Cultural Revolution, through those times to the modern day capitalist focused China we know now.The book is well written, and well translated, and ably mimics the writing style of traditional Chinese novels, but with a modern twist Interestingly the tone changes frequently from its very funny parts to the desperately sad parts, where families and dreams are crushed Others have questioned the simplicity of the narrative whether this was purposeful My view from reading it was it was certainly purposeful, to mimic the small town language of the narrator.I enjoyed the use of quotations from Mao s Red Book, from The Art of War, and from others, and no doubt manyfrom Chinese works I missed Narrated by an unknown towns person, we are offered glimpses of the future, with the story then filling in the details of how they got there Usually this involves some steps backward before moving forwards Other details about the writing it is loaded with swearing, and quite crude at times with plenty of focus on sex, so if that sort of thing is off putting for you, don t bother starting the 600 pages There is certainly an element of the absurd, but what can I say other than it worked.As I mentioned above, it has its moments, some of them very sad, distressing and aggravating, such as the weak thinking of the Red Guards, beating people to death in such cowardly ways But the book is predominantly clever and funny, albeit fairly basic humour Very good 5 stars A heartbreaking saga about two brothers during and after the cultural revolution in China The emotional floodgates opened wide open with one What a rollercoaster I laughed out loud I screamed in anguish I teared up so many times I got emotionally invested and lost I wanted to hurl the book across the room I wanted to hold it tight in arms I m legitimately mentally exhausted. When I first picked up this book in Chinese in China, I was younger and my heart was fainter I did not have the courage to finish even the first half Years later, I picked up this novel again and finished reading it in almost two separate sittings For someone who spentthan a decade in China partially rural andthan a decade in the US, the character descriptions and actions are very much close to home and real I wish I did not have to read the final 1 3 of the book but that is j When I first picked up this book in Chinese in China, I was younger and my heart was fainter I did not have the courage to finish even the first half Years later, I picked up this novel again and finished reading it in almost two separate sittings For someone who spentthan a decade in China partially rural andthan a decade in the US, the character descriptions and actions are very much close to home and real I wish I did not have to read the final 1 3 of the book but that is just the absurdity and grim reality of a culture under phenomenal and even abnormal change The raw and at times explicit language used was appropriate in reflecting simple lifestyle of the suburbia, animal instincts during the cultural revolution, and crude behavior of the newly rich and newly corrupt Like every other period of rapid change, some flourish, some falter, and others perish Overall the book is heavy with lots of comic relief and heart warming moments One common thread was how peaceful and even blissful death becomes in the face of life without dignity and hope people find solace and hope in death, kind of reminds me of scenes from Wuthering Heights If one can no longer imbue life with purpose, one can only seek to fill death with meaning.One of my favorite excerpts from the book, which I m going to translate below It brought me back to my childhood when I too, smelled, admired and sometimes licked the precious snack, swallowed my saliva before wrapping it up and putting it back without even a nibble Why is your mouth making nose sounds Song Gang chuckled, I didn t eat it, I m just smelling Li Baldy asked, Why don t you eat it Song Gang swallowed his saliva, I can t eat it, it s for you, smelling is enough for me I wept many times throughout the book, but not as wholeheartedly as I did when reading Yu Hua s To Live Towards the beginning, I was still crying about the innocence of children Towards the middle, my tears carried the weight of helplessness towards Fate In the end, I felt as if I was weeping for an entire lost generation This book is one unforgettable journey I m a classic book reader i like to experiment a little on japanese, chinese and korean authors so far I have read murakami but I like this book better I call this an idiotic book, light and comical to the point that you would rather not sleep so you can finish the book The author is a two thumbs up for me I wanted to like this book both because I admire several of Yu Hua s previous novels and because a book this large requires a considerable investment in time While Brothers contains some sections of great humor and others of heart wrenching tragedy, much of it is like a bande dessin e without pictures flat, cartoon like characters of extreme, unbelievable behavior Moreover, I found the obsession with virginity, hymen reconstruction surgery, and breast and penis enhancement, well, a bit tire I wanted to like this book both because I admire several of Yu Hua s previous novels and because a book this large requires a considerable investment in time While Brothers contains some sections of great humor and others of heart wrenching tragedy, much of it is like a bande dessin e without pictures flat, cartoon like characters of extreme, unbelievable behavior Moreover, I found the obsession with virginity, hymen reconstruction surgery, and breast and penis enhancement, well, a bit tiresome and juvenile Even though I suspect there has been some obsession with these topics in China in recent decades, they are not quite my cup of teaor at least not beyond maybe thirty or forty pages Perhaps this novel about two half brothers and their quite separate fates would have been better at 300 rather than 600 pages Or perhaps I need to talk to one of the translators, a brilliant scholar with whom I shared a few dinners a few years back Maybe he can explain to me exactly what I missed It probably is not fair of me to rate this book, because I couldn t finish it If you want to read pages and pages and pages of words with no point, Brothers is the book for you. This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers To view it, click here High comedy, high tragedy Urban sprawl The preparation of a city for the National Virgin Beauty Competition otherwise known as the Hymen Olympics , not dissimilar to the preparation of Beijing for the 2008 Olympics Scoundrel turned tycoon Baldy Li, spectacle turned loving wife turned nymphomaniac turned madam Lin Hong, and then the faithful, terminally unlucky and often pathetic Song Gang The real romance in this novel is the stormy relationship between stepbrothers Baldy Li and Song Ga High comedy, high tragedy Urban sprawl The preparation of a city for the National Virgin Beauty Competition otherwise known as the Hymen Olympics , not dissimilar to the preparation of Beijing for the 2008 Olympics Scoundrel turned tycoon Baldy Li, spectacle turned loving wife turned nymphomaniac turned madam Lin Hong, and then the faithful, terminally unlucky and often pathetic Song Gang The real romance in this novel is the stormy relationship between stepbrothers Baldy Li and Song Gang The center of the love triangle is not ultimately Lin Hong, but Song Gang, who is torn between the two for much of the story.The deaths of Baldy Li s mother and Song Gang s father set the stage for the rest of the story On her deathbed, Baldy Li s mother tells Song Gang that he must always take care of his younger brother, and he promises that he will give the last grain of rice in his bowl to Baldy Li He only breaks this promise once when he marries Lin Hong, whom Baldy Li has humiliated and stalked for years despite her lack of interest.Also of interest the theme of impotence The brazen Baldy Li undergoes a vasectomy after learning that his beloved Lin Hong, whom he spent years humiliating after peeping her backside in a public bathroom, has married the quiet, sensitive Song Gang Song Gang himself is impotent, never giving his wife a baby or, as we later find out, much sex at all His impotence is not just sexual, but universal he is unable to assert himself in relationships, and unable to provide for himself or his wife.Moreover, Song Gang is a gender ambiguous character,often than not landing in feminine territory We watch him assemble strands of flowers to sell in a basket to Liu Town women, and even undergo breast augmentation surgery to help sell Wandering Zhao s Boobs cream For several chapters, he walks around town with D cup breasts, and has moderate success selling the product It is patently absurd We, the readers, are embarrassed for him not to mention irritated that he is so submissive to his wayward business partner Zhao that he would mutilate himself this way.This story chalks much up to fate, emphasizing several times, If you are fated to have only fifteen ounces of rice in this life, then even if you go away to seek your fortune, you still won t end up a with full pound So perhaps Song Gang s tragic fate est crit dans les toiles , as the French would say my choice of expression here will make sense when you read the last page of the book Or perhaps he is simply too passive, too self sacrificing to mirror Baldy Li s rampant material successes This is a funny, sad, bawdy be patient, it is terribly bawdy towards the end and compelling book It is the story of two brothers beginning before the Cultural Revolution and ending in the 21st century and it is the story of China emerging into a modern country with all the good and the bad that comes along with such change The story is set in a small town and is told in what seems to be a simple, repetitive manner The characters are merely a way to move the story and they have no particular This is a funny, sad, bawdy be patient, it is terribly bawdy towards the end and compelling book It is the story of two brothers beginning before the Cultural Revolution and ending in the 21st century and it is the story of China emerging into a modern country with all the good and the bad that comes along with such change The story is set in a small town and is told in what seems to be a simple, repetitive manner The characters are merely a way to move the story and they have no particular depth nor do they truly undergo any change, but that is okay the main character here is China I am not a fan of most satirical comedy I find it tasteless and not funny but I truly laughed out loud at many places in the book s 641 pages Maybe because it is satirical but also sweet and the author loves China A long book by pages but it goes quickly and is not like the wonderful long novels that you read with slow steps and feel when you finish that you have left a life somewhere THis book just hops along I learned that it was a best seller in China This book is amazing It goes from being hilarious, to depressing, to jaw dropping and back it made me feel like I m on a roller coaster This book reads like it has 300 pages not once did I think something was redundant or drawn out In fact, I felt it stopped almost too sudden.The characters are wonderfully drawn out and jump off the page This despite the fact that the book often reads like a fable.Most interesting is the cultural revolution and how it affected the town of Liu It s interes This book is amazing It goes from being hilarious, to depressing, to jaw dropping and back it made me feel like I m on a roller coaster This book reads like it has 300 pages not once did I think something was redundant or drawn out In fact, I felt it stopped almost too sudden.The characters are wonderfully drawn out and jump off the page This despite the fact that the book often reads like a fable.Most interesting is the cultural revolution and how it affected the town of Liu It s interesting that the characters start out living in huts with no electricity or running water and having to use the public outhouse and towards the end of the books the town has been completely modernized And with it, the protagonists evolve as well Ironically, the town and it s citizens all are muchcapitalistic after the cultural revolution than before

Hardcover  Ù Brothers PDF ¿
    EPUB is an ebook file format that uses the epub ve never seen it, in a sweeping, Rabelaisian panorama of forty years of rough and rumble Chinese history that has already scandalized millions of readers in the author s homeland Yu Hua, award winning author of To Live, gives us a surreal tale of two Brothers riding the dizzying roller coaster of life in a newly capitalist world As comically mismatched teenagers, Baldy Li, a sex obsessed ne er do well, and Song Gang, his bookish, sensitive stepbrother, vow that they will always be Brothers a bond they will struggle to maintain over the years as they weather the ups and downs of rivalry in love and making and losing millions in the new China Their tribulations play out across a richly populated backdrop that is every bit as vibrant the rapidly changing village of Liu Town, full of such lively characters as the self important Poet Zhao, the craven dentist Yanker Yu, the virginal town beauty turned madam Lin Hong, and the simpering vendor Popsicle WangWith sly and biting humor, combined with an insightful and compassionate eye for the lives of ordinary people, Yu Hua shows how the madness of the Cultural Revolution has transformed into the equally rabid madness of extreme materialism Both tragic and absurd by turns, Brothers is a monumental spectacle and a fascinating vision of an extraordinary place and time. To begin with, a poorly devised haiku review Yu s roller coaster Is careless with emotions.Like a bad girlfriend________________I m not really sure what to make of Brothers I liked it, that much is certain.The story is expansive and the characters indelible The insight into the development of Chinese culture over the last four decades was enlightening The episodes related were heartfelt, both funny and tragic And sometimes even both simultaneously I was involved for the book s entirety wh To begin with, a poorly devised haiku review Yu s roller coaster Is careless with emotions.Like a bad girlfriend________________I m not really sure what to make of Brothers I liked it, that much is certain.The story is expansive and the characters indelible The insight into the development of Chinese culture over the last four decades was enlightening The episodes related were heartfelt, both funny and tragic And sometimes even both simultaneously I was involved for the book s entirety which was not insubstantial.The problem, I guess, is twofold 1 I can t tell if the writing was simplistic and somewhat stilted by design or by translation and 2 the extremism of Yu s emotional roller coaster reminds one of the formulaic approach of self important tear jerkers that mob the cineplex every Fall So far as the writing goes, it wasa curiosity than a bother If the style was due to translator inadequacy, then I suppose I should feel a little ripped off not getting anything close to the full expression of the author s intended work , but if the style was the author s choice and the translators indeed faithfully transmitted Yu s text into the book I read, then I find the choice fascinating If the text was truly intended to be as simplistic as it was, then perhaps the semantic and grammatical choices fit the story Liu Town, where the principal action occurs is certainly provincial and a place in which education is of the smallest of concerns It then makes a kind of sense that the narrative should echo the voice of the story s inhabitants.Emotionally, Brothers may be one of the saddest funny books I ve ever read I laughed a lot mostly due to the ridiculousness of the town s many inhabitants and most especially because of the proclamations of the principal brother, Baldy Li Still, the story carriesthan its share of tragedies And these aren t just garden variety tragedies either Brothers can be brutal as it destroys lives without tact or conscience Perhaps this too is a reflection of the world in which our the brothers dwell, an echo of the terror both loud and quiet that the last half century of China s history and culture have wrought in the lives of its citizens In any case, I don t know if I ve ever feltmournful while reading a novel Which of course makes me suspect it Brothers develops alongside the lives of two step brothers orproperly, brothers from about 1960 onward These brothers weather the terrible years of the Cultural Revolution and the mortal fear Chairman Mao s movement instilled in the nation They struggle through the years following and look for opportunities in thecapitalistic China that would grow out of the revolutionary era Their differing temperaments and philosophies of life offer breadth to the tale, allowing readers tocompletely apprehend China and its culture Yu focuses much of his effort exploring the depths of human folly and the sewer stain of humanity s soul, only occasionally revealing the purity of true love and camaraderie throughout And of course those moments shine all thebrightly due their depraved surroundings I don t know exactly what Yu thinks of the human being, but I suspect that he doesn t think much of it though he seems willing to be surprised by its moments of joy and beauty No real spoilers below I left all the surprise parts outBaldi Li never met his father, who died on the day he was born, drowned in a cesspit of the public toilets, where he was peeping at the women next door When his mother married Song Fangping, Song Gang, who was eight one year older than Baldy Li, became his brother.When the Cultural revolution started, Baldy Li s mother was in hospital in Shanghai, and life was very hard, as Song Fangping was a school teacher, and therefore a class e No real spoilers below I left all the surprise parts outBaldi Li never met his father, who died on the day he was born, drowned in a cesspit of the public toilets, where he was peeping at the women next door When his mother married Song Fangping, Song Gang, who was eight one year older than Baldy Li, became his brother.When the Cultural revolution started, Baldy Li s mother was in hospital in Shanghai, and life was very hard, as Song Fangping was a school teacher, and therefore a class enemy He was humiliated and beaten, and then imprisoned This left Song Gang and Baldi Li to fend for themselves Picked on by others, it was a hard life, and the brothers had to look out for each other.In the book we follow their lives from childhood to old age in the present day written 2006 We are introduced to the main characters of Liu Town where they live and follow the path of China from before the Cultural Revolution, through those times to the modern day capitalist focused China we know now.The book is well written, and well translated, and ably mimics the writing style of traditional Chinese novels, but with a modern twist Interestingly the tone changes frequently from its very funny parts to the desperately sad parts, where families and dreams are crushed Others have questioned the simplicity of the narrative whether this was purposeful My view from reading it was it was certainly purposeful, to mimic the small town language of the narrator.I enjoyed the use of quotations from Mao s Red Book, from The Art of War, and from others, and no doubt manyfrom Chinese works I missed Narrated by an unknown towns person, we are offered glimpses of the future, with the story then filling in the details of how they got there Usually this involves some steps backward before moving forwards Other details about the writing it is loaded with swearing, and quite crude at times with plenty of focus on sex, so if that sort of thing is off putting for you, don t bother starting the 600 pages There is certainly an element of the absurd, but what can I say other than it worked.As I mentioned above, it has its moments, some of them very sad, distressing and aggravating, such as the weak thinking of the Red Guards, beating people to death in such cowardly ways But the book is predominantly clever and funny, albeit fairly basic humour Very good 5 stars A heartbreaking saga about two brothers during and after the cultural revolution in China The emotional floodgates opened wide open with one What a rollercoaster I laughed out loud I screamed in anguish I teared up so many times I got emotionally invested and lost I wanted to hurl the book across the room I wanted to hold it tight in arms I m legitimately mentally exhausted. When I first picked up this book in Chinese in China, I was younger and my heart was fainter I did not have the courage to finish even the first half Years later, I picked up this novel again and finished reading it in almost two separate sittings For someone who spentthan a decade in China partially rural andthan a decade in the US, the character descriptions and actions are very much close to home and real I wish I did not have to read the final 1 3 of the book but that is j When I first picked up this book in Chinese in China, I was younger and my heart was fainter I did not have the courage to finish even the first half Years later, I picked up this novel again and finished reading it in almost two separate sittings For someone who spentthan a decade in China partially rural andthan a decade in the US, the character descriptions and actions are very much close to home and real I wish I did not have to read the final 1 3 of the book but that is just the absurdity and grim reality of a culture under phenomenal and even abnormal change The raw and at times explicit language used was appropriate in reflecting simple lifestyle of the suburbia, animal instincts during the cultural revolution, and crude behavior of the newly rich and newly corrupt Like every other period of rapid change, some flourish, some falter, and others perish Overall the book is heavy with lots of comic relief and heart warming moments One common thread was how peaceful and even blissful death becomes in the face of life without dignity and hope people find solace and hope in death, kind of reminds me of scenes from Wuthering Heights If one can no longer imbue life with purpose, one can only seek to fill death with meaning.One of my favorite excerpts from the book, which I m going to translate below It brought me back to my childhood when I too, smelled, admired and sometimes licked the precious snack, swallowed my saliva before wrapping it up and putting it back without even a nibble Why is your mouth making nose sounds Song Gang chuckled, I didn t eat it, I m just smelling Li Baldy asked, Why don t you eat it Song Gang swallowed his saliva, I can t eat it, it s for you, smelling is enough for me I wept many times throughout the book, but not as wholeheartedly as I did when reading Yu Hua s To Live Towards the beginning, I was still crying about the innocence of children Towards the middle, my tears carried the weight of helplessness towards Fate In the end, I felt as if I was weeping for an entire lost generation This book is one unforgettable journey I m a classic book reader i like to experiment a little on japanese, chinese and korean authors so far I have read murakami but I like this book better I call this an idiotic book, light and comical to the point that you would rather not sleep so you can finish the book The author is a two thumbs up for me I wanted to like this book both because I admire several of Yu Hua s previous novels and because a book this large requires a considerable investment in time While Brothers contains some sections of great humor and others of heart wrenching tragedy, much of it is like a bande dessin e without pictures flat, cartoon like characters of extreme, unbelievable behavior Moreover, I found the obsession with virginity, hymen reconstruction surgery, and breast and penis enhancement, well, a bit tire I wanted to like this book both because I admire several of Yu Hua s previous novels and because a book this large requires a considerable investment in time While Brothers contains some sections of great humor and others of heart wrenching tragedy, much of it is like a bande dessin e without pictures flat, cartoon like characters of extreme, unbelievable behavior Moreover, I found the obsession with virginity, hymen reconstruction surgery, and breast and penis enhancement, well, a bit tiresome and juvenile Even though I suspect there has been some obsession with these topics in China in recent decades, they are not quite my cup of teaor at least not beyond maybe thirty or forty pages Perhaps this novel about two half brothers and their quite separate fates would have been better at 300 rather than 600 pages Or perhaps I need to talk to one of the translators, a brilliant scholar with whom I shared a few dinners a few years back Maybe he can explain to me exactly what I missed It probably is not fair of me to rate this book, because I couldn t finish it If you want to read pages and pages and pages of words with no point, Brothers is the book for you. This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers To view it, click here High comedy, high tragedy Urban sprawl The preparation of a city for the National Virgin Beauty Competition otherwise known as the Hymen Olympics , not dissimilar to the preparation of Beijing for the 2008 Olympics Scoundrel turned tycoon Baldy Li, spectacle turned loving wife turned nymphomaniac turned madam Lin Hong, and then the faithful, terminally unlucky and often pathetic Song Gang The real romance in this novel is the stormy relationship between stepbrothers Baldy Li and Song Ga High comedy, high tragedy Urban sprawl The preparation of a city for the National Virgin Beauty Competition otherwise known as the Hymen Olympics , not dissimilar to the preparation of Beijing for the 2008 Olympics Scoundrel turned tycoon Baldy Li, spectacle turned loving wife turned nymphomaniac turned madam Lin Hong, and then the faithful, terminally unlucky and often pathetic Song Gang The real romance in this novel is the stormy relationship between stepbrothers Baldy Li and Song Gang The center of the love triangle is not ultimately Lin Hong, but Song Gang, who is torn between the two for much of the story.The deaths of Baldy Li s mother and Song Gang s father set the stage for the rest of the story On her deathbed, Baldy Li s mother tells Song Gang that he must always take care of his younger brother, and he promises that he will give the last grain of rice in his bowl to Baldy Li He only breaks this promise once when he marries Lin Hong, whom Baldy Li has humiliated and stalked for years despite her lack of interest.Also of interest the theme of impotence The brazen Baldy Li undergoes a vasectomy after learning that his beloved Lin Hong, whom he spent years humiliating after peeping her backside in a public bathroom, has married the quiet, sensitive Song Gang Song Gang himself is impotent, never giving his wife a baby or, as we later find out, much sex at all His impotence is not just sexual, but universal he is unable to assert himself in relationships, and unable to provide for himself or his wife.Moreover, Song Gang is a gender ambiguous character,often than not landing in feminine territory We watch him assemble strands of flowers to sell in a basket to Liu Town women, and even undergo breast augmentation surgery to help sell Wandering Zhao s Boobs cream For several chapters, he walks around town with D cup breasts, and has moderate success selling the product It is patently absurd We, the readers, are embarrassed for him not to mention irritated that he is so submissive to his wayward business partner Zhao that he would mutilate himself this way.This story chalks much up to fate, emphasizing several times, If you are fated to have only fifteen ounces of rice in this life, then even if you go away to seek your fortune, you still won t end up a with full pound So perhaps Song Gang s tragic fate est crit dans les toiles , as the French would say my choice of expression here will make sense when you read the last page of the book Or perhaps he is simply too passive, too self sacrificing to mirror Baldy Li s rampant material successes This is a funny, sad, bawdy be patient, it is terribly bawdy towards the end and compelling book It is the story of two brothers beginning before the Cultural Revolution and ending in the 21st century and it is the story of China emerging into a modern country with all the good and the bad that comes along with such change The story is set in a small town and is told in what seems to be a simple, repetitive manner The characters are merely a way to move the story and they have no particular This is a funny, sad, bawdy be patient, it is terribly bawdy towards the end and compelling book It is the story of two brothers beginning before the Cultural Revolution and ending in the 21st century and it is the story of China emerging into a modern country with all the good and the bad that comes along with such change The story is set in a small town and is told in what seems to be a simple, repetitive manner The characters are merely a way to move the story and they have no particular depth nor do they truly undergo any change, but that is okay the main character here is China I am not a fan of most satirical comedy I find it tasteless and not funny but I truly laughed out loud at many places in the book s 641 pages Maybe because it is satirical but also sweet and the author loves China A long book by pages but it goes quickly and is not like the wonderful long novels that you read with slow steps and feel when you finish that you have left a life somewhere THis book just hops along I learned that it was a best seller in China This book is amazing It goes from being hilarious, to depressing, to jaw dropping and back it made me feel like I m on a roller coaster This book reads like it has 300 pages not once did I think something was redundant or drawn out In fact, I felt it stopped almost too sudden.The characters are wonderfully drawn out and jump off the page This despite the fact that the book often reads like a fable.Most interesting is the cultural revolution and how it affected the town of Liu It s interes This book is amazing It goes from being hilarious, to depressing, to jaw dropping and back it made me feel like I m on a roller coaster This book reads like it has 300 pages not once did I think something was redundant or drawn out In fact, I felt it stopped almost too sudden.The characters are wonderfully drawn out and jump off the page This despite the fact that the book often reads like a fable.Most interesting is the cultural revolution and how it affected the town of Liu It s interesting that the characters start out living in huts with no electricity or running water and having to use the public outhouse and towards the end of the books the town has been completely modernized And with it, the protagonists evolve as well Ironically, the town and it s citizens all are muchcapitalistic after the cultural revolution than before "/>
  • Hardcover
  • 656 pages
  • Brothers
  • Yu Hua
  • English
  • 07 February 2017
  • 0375424997