Getting Used to Dying: A Novel

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New York, N.Y. c1991 Hard cover 1st edition, 1st. printing New in mylar cover. Mylar cover may show some rub wear. 291 p.; 24 cm. Translation of: Hsi kuan ssu wang. FIRST ... EDITION STATED == 132 == Read more Show Less

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More About This Book

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Few American novels can approach the power and impact of this extraordinary work, a fictionalized autobiography by the Chinese author of Half of Man Is Woman . A harrowing account of the effects of repressive government on the individual, the novel moves between China and San Francisco, New York and Paris as its protagonist examines his own ``old-fashioned patriotism'' during a trip to the West. Central to the character's psyche are the wounds left by his attempted ``reformation'' by the Communists, a process which at one point involves his being marched to the execution ground--and left alive while those around him are killed, to wait for the rest of his life for the bullet to find him. The scene on the execution ground is unforgettable, its shocking subject filtered through a careful and farseeing irony. Although the level of the writing is generally sophisticated, the prose is occasionally self-conscious or strained--but this failing in no way impinges on the book's greatest accomplishment, its inherent refutation of its own dire assessment of China today: ``A country that cannot produce a nobility of the spirit is a country that is doomed.'' (Jan.)
Library Journal
The author uses his life in China and a trip to various parts of the United States as backdrops for a depiction of his emotional life. Being condemned as a political prisoner, even being taken to his execution, has no meaning for him, he says, since his ``death''--the loss of his beliefs, his hopes, his work as a writer, and especially his ability to love--has already occurred. Well known in China, Zhang is an important author both for his experiments with style (which make him rather difficult) and his political dissent. Avery, who also translated Zhang's Half of Man Is Woman ( LJ 9/1/88), provides a fine En glish version of this new work. Recommended.-- Kitty Chen Dean, Nassau Community Coll., Garden City, N.Y.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780060165215
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 1/1/1991
  • Edition description: 1st ed
  • Pages: 288

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