One of the last decade’s ten most influential books in China, this internationally acclaimed novel by one of the mainland’s most important contemporary writers provides an unflinching portrait of life under Chairman Mao.
A cart-pusher in a silk mill, Xu Sanguan augments his meager salary with regular visits to the local blood chief. His visits become lethally frequent as he struggles to provide for his wife and three sons at the height of the Cultural Revolution. Shattered to discover that his favorite son was actually born of a liaison between his wife and a neighbor, he suffers his greatest indignity, while his wife is publicly scorned as a prostitute. Although the poverty and betrayals of Mao’s regime have drained him, Xu Sanguan ultimately finds strength in the blood ties of his family. With rare emotional intensity, grippingly raw descriptions of place and time, and clear-eyed compassion, Yu Hua gives us a stunning tapestry of human life in the grave particulars of one man’s days.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
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|Title of eBook: Chronicle of a Blood Merchant|
|Release Date: 12-18-2007|
|Allowed Countries (hover)|
|Publisher: Knopf Publishing Group|
This eBook download is available in the following formats:
|Parent title||Chronicle of a...|
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Chronicle of a Blood Merchant
Xu Sanguan worked in the silk factory in town, distributing silkworm cocoons to the spinners. But today he was out in the country visiting his grandpa. His grandpa's eyes had dimmed and blurred with age, and he was having trouble making out who it was standing by the door. He called for Xu Sanguan to stand a bit closer, looked him over for a moment, and then asked, "Son, where's your face?"
Xu Sanguan said, "Grandpa, I'm not your son, I'm your grandson, and my face is right here in front of you." He pulled his grandpa's hand over to his face, let him pat it, and then put it back in his lap. His grandpa's palms felt like raw silk yarn.
His grandpa asked, "Why doesn't your dad come and see me?"
"Dad died a long time ago."
His grandpa nodded, and a string of saliva slipped out from between his lips. He tilted his head and sucked until some of it came back in. "Son, how's your health?"
"Good," Xu Sanguan said. "Grandpa, I'm not your son."
His grandpa continued, "Do you sell your blood too?"
Xu Sanguan shook his head. "No, I've never sold my blood."
"Son," Grandpa said, "you're telling me that you're in good health, but you've never sold your blood. I think you're trying to make a fool of me."
"Grandpa, what are you trying to say? I don't understand. Grandpa, are you senile?"
Grandpa shook his head.
Xu Sanguan added, "Grandpa, I'm not your son. I'm your grandson."
"Son," his grandpa continued, "your dad wouldn't listen to me. Fell for some 'flower