Yiyun Li Books & Bio. Cheap Books by Yiyun Li. Book People
Books by Yiyun Li
The second collection of stories from Yiyun Li, author of the Guardian First Book Award-winning A Thousand Years of Good Prayers and The Vagrants. The stories in this collection, like the stories in A Thousand Years of Good Prayers, are mostly set in China. The country portrayed here is the China of the 21st century, where economic development has led to new situations unknown to previous decades: residents in a shabby apartment building witnessing in awe the real estate boom; a local entrepreneur-turned-philanthropist sheltering women in trouble in her mansion; a group of retired women discovering fame late in their lives as private investigators specialising in extramarital affairs; a young woman setting up a blog to publicise the alleged affair of her father. Underneath the veneer of prosperity and opportunity, however, lie the struggles of characters trying to reorient themselves in the unfamiliar landscapes of modern China: a widower, reminiscing about his wife, confronts a young unmarried woman purchasing condoms in a pharmacy; a new wife makes a plea to have a baby with her husband who was to be executed only to discover that she has become an instant celebrity; a middle-aged couple in America, who, upon losing their only daughter, return to their hometown in China to hire a young woman as a surrogate mother. These characters' fates are affected as much by the historical moments in which they reside as by the choices they make. Yiyun Li's new collection of stories is a report from the front-line of a changing world, and confirms Li to be a writer not to be missed.
- RRP £8.99
The oldest written story on Earth, retold for children "A real friend is a companion for your heart." Godlike Gilgamesh, King of Uruk, has built a beautiful city, but is also a terrible tyrant. In answer to the prayers of his oppressed citizens, the gods create Enkidu, a wild man whose destiny is to first fight Gilgamesh, and then become his life-long friend. They embark on adventures together, but when they - together - kill the Bull of Heaven, Enkidu must pay the ultimate price. In his grief and fear of his own death, Gilgamesh goes on a journey to discover the secret to immortality ...
- RRP £14.99
Brilliant and original, 'A Thousand Years of Good Prayers' introduces a remarkable first collection of stories about China from an author set to become a major literary talent. In this extraordinary first collection, Yiyun Li brings us a modern China facing up to a complex history of repression and guilt. In 'Immortality', winner of the Paris Review prize, a young man bears a striking resemblance to the dictator, and so finds a strange kind of calling. In 'Extra', first published in the New Yorker, a Chinese woman, alone in middle age, befriends a young boy who has become an outcast in a remote country school. In their friendship, we see how love can begin to overcome the strictures that dominate their lives. In turn horrifying and breathtakingly lyrical, Yiyun Li, a new and talented young Chinese writer, confronts the silence that dominated the history of her country, and illuminates how mythology, politics, history and culture intersect with personality. She leaves us with an enduring vision of a country undergoing tremendous change.
- RRP £8.99
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The new novel from Yiyun Li, author of The Vagrants and the Guardian First Book Award-winning A Thousand Years of Good Prayers. When Moran, Ruyu, and Boyang were young, they were involved in a mysterious 'accident' in which a young woman was poisoned. Now grown up, the three friends are separated by this incident, and by time and distance. Boyang stayed in China, while Moran and Ruyu emigrated to the United States. All three remain haunted by what really happened. A breathtaking page-turner, Kinder Than Solitude resonates with provocative observations about human nature and the virtues of loyalty. In mesmerizing prose, and with profound philosophical insight, Yiyun Li unfolds this remarkable story, even as she explores the impact of personality and the past on the shape of a person's present and future.
- RRP £8.99
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The much-anticipated first novel from the Guardian First Book Award-winning Chinese writer. In the provincial town of Muddy Waters in China, a young woman named Gu Shan is sentenced to death for her loss of faith in Communism. She is twenty-eight years old and has already spent ten years in prison. The citizens stage a protest after her death and, over the following six weeks, the town goes through uncertainty, hope and fear until eventually the rebellion is brutally suppressed. They are all taken on a painful journey, from one young woman's death to another. We follow the pain of Gu Shan's parents, the hope and fear of the leaders of the protest and their families. Even those who seem unconnected to the tragedy -- an eleven-year-old boy seeking fame and glory, a nineteen-year-old village idiot in love with a young and deformed girl, an old couple making a living by scavenging the town's garbage cans -- are caught up in a remorseless turn of events. Yiyun Li's novel is based on the true story which took place in China in 1979.
- RRP £8.99
A luminous memoir from the award-winning author of The Vagrants and A Thousand Years of Good Prayers 'What a long way it is from one life to another. Yet why write if not for that distance?' Startlingly original and shining with quiet wisdom, this is a memoir of a life lived with books. Written over two years while the author battled suicidal depression, Dear Friend is a painful and yet richly affirming examination of what makes life worth living. Li grew up in China, her mother suffering from mental illness, and has spent her adult life as an immigrant in a country not her own. She has been a scientist, an author, an immigrant, a mother - and through it all, she has been sustained by a deep connection with the writers and books she loves. From William Trevor and Katherine Mansfield to Kierkegaard and Larkin, Dear Friend is a journey through the deepest themes that bind these writers together. Interweaving personal experiences with a wide-ranging homage to her most cherished literary influences, Yiyun Li confronts the two most essential questions of her identity: Why write? And why live? Dear Friend is a beautiful, interior exploration of selfhood and a journey of recovery through literature.
- RRP £14.99
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From the critically acclaimed author of The Vagrants, a devastating and utterly original novel on grief and motherhood 'Days: the easiest possession. The days he had refused would come, one at a time. They would wait, every daybreak, with their boundless patience and indifference, seeing if they could turn me into an ally or an enemy to myself.' A woman's teenage son takes his own life. It is incomprehensible. The woman is a writer, and so she attempts to comprehend her grief in the space she knows best: on the page, as an imagined conversation with the child she has lost. He is as sharp and funny and serious in death as he was in life itself, and he will speak back to her, unable to offer explanation or solace, but not yet, not quite, gone. Where Reasons End is an extraordinary portrait of parenthood, in all its painful contradictions of joy, humour and sorrow, and of what it is to lose a child. Praise for Yiyun Li: 'A masterpiece...[Puts] you in mind of Tolstoy or Chekhov' Sunday Times on The Vagrants 'This is a book of immense power and it will leave you reeling' New Statesman on The Vagrants 'Controlled understatement, scrupulous and unsparing lucidity... A work of great moral poise and dignity.I have not read such a compelling work in years' Independent
- RRP £12.99
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