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Peking Story : The Last Days of Old China - David Kidd

Peking Story

The Last Days of Old China

By: David Kidd, John Lanchester (Preface by)

Paperback

Published: 31st July 2003
Ships: 7 to 10 business days
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RRP $31.95
$28.95

For two years before and after the 1948 Communist Revolution, David Kidd lived in Peking, where he married the daughter of an aristocratic Chinese family. "I used to hope," he writes, "that some bright young scholar on a research grant would write about us and our Chinese friends before it was too late and we were all dead and gone, folding into the darkness the wonder that had been our lives." Here Kidd himself brings that wonder to life.

Kidd's pieces have been a double illumination. Their intimate domestic lanterns shed light on the dark side of the moon and, exotic and informational interest aside, glow in their own skins, as art. They are simple, graceful, comic, mournful miniatures of an ominous catastrophe, the unprecedently swift death of a uniquely ancient civilization. -- John Updike In the reader's eye, Kidd's story wavers between fact and fiction. It seems too good to be true, like the perfectly woven family sagas common to the great Chinese novels and Victorian fiction. But the climax, the unwritten final chapter of Peking Story, is firmly written in fact: the crumbling of an empire 4000 years old. To achieve this effect in less than 200 pages is astounding. -- Alberto Manguel

Prefacep. ix
Introductionp. xv
Dragons, Pink Babies, and the Consular Servicep. 3
White Funeral, White Socksp. 16
All the Emperor's Horsesp. 30
Criminals, Cadres, and Cooksp. 39
Red Gates and Water Devilsp. 52
The Sea of Wisdomp. 65
Silver Pins and Blood-Red Skirtsp. 69
The Ancestorsp. 92
Lilyp. 105
Dogs, Mah-Jongg, and Americansp. 129
Houses and People and Tables and Chairsp. 146
A Gift of New Vasesp. 168
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9781590170403
ISBN-10: 1590170407
Series: New York Review Books Classics
Audience: General
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 183
Published: 31st July 2003
Publisher: New York Review of Books
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 20.4 x 12.8  x 1.3
Weight (kg): 0.21