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September's Fable
A Novel

 

Author: Zhang Wei
Translator: Terence Russell & Shawn Xian Ye
ISBN-13: 9781931907460
ISBN-10: 1931907463
Order No. 1050
6 x 9, Paperback
495 pages, November 2007
Fiction
$29.95
20% off: $23.96

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Book Description
About the Author
About the Translators
Review
More about the Author

BOOK DESCRIPTION

     

September's Fable tells the story of the rise and fall of a Chinese coastal village through its difficult formation, hard existence and inevitable disintegration. Spanning approximately sixty years, the novel is a rich and intriguing tapestry of life and death in rural China. Somewhat in the tradition of William Faulkner and Gabriel García Márquez, September's Fable weaves history, politics, and folklore close together to bring an enchanting way of storytelling that dexterously touches on such universal themes as love and hate, war and revolution, city and country, the noble and the ugly, and, more importantly, the inevitability of the old superseded by the new and young.

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Born in 1956 in a small seaside town of eastern China, Zhang Wei has published ten novels, over a dozen novellas and numerous short stories, essays and poems. He has won more than thirty important national and international literary prizes. Zhang Wei is regarded as one of the “Ten Most Important Chinese Writers of the 1990's, and his novel September’s Fable is regarded as one of the “Ten Most Important Chinese Literary Works of the 1990s.” More about Zhang Wei

 

ABOUT THE TRANSLATORS

 
Terence Russell is Associate Professor of Chinese in the Asian Studies Centre at the University of Manitoba in Canada, where he teaches Chinese language and literature. Shawn Xian Ye has taught at universities and colleges in both China and the U.S. He is also the coauthor of a nonfiction book in English, The Haier Way (2003).

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BOOK REVIEW

 
One of contemporary China's most prolific and widely respected novelists, Zhang Wei has remained a secret in the West. This fine translation of one of his most complex novels will change that, and is a welcome addition to the growing corpus of Chinese fiction in English.
Howard Goldblatt, Professor of Chinese, University of Notre Dame, and the foremost translator of contemporary Chinese literature in the West

 

ZHANG WEI: A MORE DETAILED INTRODUCTION


Born in 1956 in the small seaside town of Longkou (Dragon Mouth) in Shangdong Province, China, Zhang Wei spent his early years in a forested area in that area. Much under the influence of his family, he began writing at an early age. He published his long poem “Visiting the Bugler” when he was seventeen. In order to escape his family's political difficulties, he left home to wander the Shandong peninsula alone for many years. In 1979 he was enrolled in the Chinese Department of Yantai Normal Institute of Shangdong Province to study creative writing. Since then he has published over seventy individual volumes of various kinds of writings, including novels, poems, prose, and essays. A conscientious and assiduous writer, Zhang Wei has shadings of strong romanticism and idealism in addition to a nearly mystical affection for nature.

In 1982, he won his first national literary prize. Since then he has been awarded more than thirty important national and international literary prizes. This has made him one of China's most influential and most prominent authors. In 1987, Zhang Wei moved to live in a small cottage on the outskirts of Longkou where he lived with his aged mother for over five years. During that time he submerged himself primarily in writing September's Fable, a novel that has significant impact on the Chinese literary scene. Focusing on writing rather than fanfare, Zhang Wei has always been trying to avoid publicity and associations. He rarely makes public appearances. Among the heavyweight Chinese authors he is the one and perhaps the only “hermit.”

But Zhang Wei has always been the focal point of the Chinese literary scene. Virtually every three or four years since 1984 the Chinese literary circle would have a round of discussion and debate over Zhang Wei and his writings. Given his importance, it would be hard to imagine contemporary Chinese literature without Zhang Wei.


ZHANG WEI: MAJOR HONORS AND AWARDS


1) In a survey conducted in 2000 among one hundred Chinese literary critics for "The Ten Most Important Chinese Writers of the 1990s," Zhang Wei was on the list. In the same survey for "The Ten Most Important Chinese Literary Works of the 1990s," Zhang Wei's novel September's Fable was on the list.

2) Ancient Boat, top 100 Chinese novels in the 20th Century, Asia Weekly, 2000

3) September's Fable, the best novel award, Chinese Writers' Association and China News, 1998

4) Selected Writings of Zhang Wei, the best book award, Shangdong Province, 1997

5) In 1996 with the "Most Favored Authors Survey" conducted by the national "New China Digest" and "People's Press," Zhang Wei ranked the second.

6) In 1996, over three thousand novels published in Mainland China between 1985 and 1995 were evaluated for literary prizes. Zhang Wei was the only author who had two novels – Ancient Boat and September's Fable – among the top twenty.

7) September's Fable, the first prize for novel, the Grand awards for best novels and novellas published in Shanghai, 1994

8) "The Autumn of Wrath," the best novella award, Novella Magazine, 1986

9) "A Pool of Clear Water," the best short story award, the Chinese Writers' Association, 1984

10) "Voice," the best short story award, the Chinese Writers' Association, 1982

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