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A Hundred Flowers: A Novel by Gail Tsukiyama

A Hundred Flowers: A Novel (2012)

by Gail Tsukiyama

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I listened to this book in audiobook format, read exceptionally well by Simon Vance.

It was an interesting story about a period in time and history I did not know much about. I wish there had been more actual history and more personal perspectives by the characters as the story unfolded. I enjoyed the story but found it slow. Glad I stuck with it and equally glad it is done now. ( )
  jessibud2 | Aug 14, 2014 |
Joy's review: Well, one of our book group participants said it best for me: "it's as if Tsukiyama was trying to be poetic and didn't quite make it". This leave the book overly simplistic and flat. Story is tucked into Chinese history just after the Communist revolution and just before the Great Leap forward, yet there is no mention of the effects either WWII or the revolution or any foreshadowing of the Great Leap. Good book for middle school students. ( )
  konastories | May 19, 2014 |
She writes lovely books. Good read ( )
  shazjhb | Nov 5, 2013 |
This book was a Goodreads book that I was thrilled to receive. If you like Gail Tsukiyama's books, this will not disappoint. The story is woven through a family through a difficult time. You can't help but turn the pages wondering about each character and how things will turn out. I guess it's a good review to say that I was left wanting more. I'm waiting for Another 100 Flowers now!!! ( )
  susan.jeffery | Jul 10, 2013 |
In 1950's China, a family is devastated when one member is imprisoned after participating in a letter writing campaign to critique the government. ( )
  poetreegirl | Jul 5, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 17 (next | show all)
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Let a hundred flowers bloom; let a

hundred schools of thought contend.

--Mao Tse Tung, 1956
For Tom
First words
The courtyard was still quiet so early in the morning, the neighborhood just waking as Neighbor Lau's rooster began to crow.
Last words
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0312274815, Hardcover)

A powerful new novel about an ordinary family facing extraordinary times at the start of the Chinese Cultural Revolution
China, 1957. Chairman Mao has declared a new openness in society: “Let a hundred flowers bloom; let a hundred schools of thought contend.” Many intellectuals fear it is only a trick, and Kai Ying’s husband, Sheng, a teacher, has promised not to jeopardize their safety or that of their young son, Tao. But one July morning, just before his sixth birthday, Tao watches helplessly as Sheng is dragged away for writing a letter criticizing the Communist Party and sent to a labor camp for “reeducation.”

A year later, still missing his father desperately, Tao climbs to the top of the hundred-year-old kapok tree in front of their home, wanting to see the mountain peaks in the distance. But Tao slips and tumbles thirty feet to the courtyard below, badly breaking his leg.
As Kai Ying struggles to hold her small family together in the face of this shattering reminder of her husband’s absence, other members of the household must face their own guilty secrets and strive to find peace in a world where the old sense of order is falling. Once again, Tsukiyama brings us a powerfully moving story of ordinary people facing extraordinary circumstances with grace and courage.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:12:01 -0400)

A tale set during the Chinese Cultural Revolution follows the struggles of Kai Ying to safeguard her family when her teacher husband is arrested and sent to a "reeducation" labor camp for criticizing the Communist Party.

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