Author(s): Ma Jian (tr from Chinese Flora Drew)
From the award-winning author of Red Dust, comes a virtuoso piece of 'red humour' - a darkly funny novel about the absurdities and cruelties of life in modern China. Every week, a writer of political propaganda and a professional blood donor meet for dinner. They are unlikely friends - one of them tortured by his 'art', the other fat and wealthy from the earthy business of providing spare blood for the citizens of China. Over the course of one especially gastronomic evening, the writer starts to complain about his latest Party commission: the story of an ordinary soldier who sacrifices his life to the revolutionary cause. This is not the novel he wants to write, he tells his friend. Inside his head lives an unwritten book about the people he knows or sees everyday on the streets - people whose lives are far more representative of the world in which he lives.