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skylee

I am not really reading anything right now. Sometimes when I am really bored, I read a bit of 鹿鼎記. Sometimes I read Bill Bryson's "A Short History of Nearly Everything". And usually I read a bit of poetry before going to bed.

I have just finished reading "圍城" written by 錢鍾書 and cannot understand why people rave about it ...

How about you?

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Recently I picked up the Chinese weekly magazine "Asia Weekly" and interestingly they compiled a list of the 10 most read books from 6 cities: Beijing, Shanghai, Chengdu, Guangzhou, Hong Kong and Kuala Lumpur.

Amazingly most of the books on the list do not overlap -- not even those between Shanghai and Beijing.

Actually China (or Sinic circle) is as diverse as Europe even in the field of cultural appetite.

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xuechengfeng

Just finished reading this

next up is this

and occassionally i read a few passages from the bible or qu'ran. more than half done w/the bible, but it has been awhile since i read it.

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I'm halfway the Hong lou meng (in English), also reading Dostojevski, and just finished Yin Lichuan's first novel.

Also reading a lot about Zhang Zhidong and late Qing educational reform, but that's for study.

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I've just finished Soul Mountain by Gao Xingjian (in English). I don't think I'll attempt the Chinese version any time soon! I've moved onto an anthology of classic short stories by various writers.

I spend more and more time reading poetry these days. I think I prefer poetry to prose right now. I'm reading an anthology of 20th century western poetry and a collection of poetry by Ovid (in translation).

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skylee

Ian, could you share that list (post a link etc)? I can't find it on the web.

Lu, could you turn your Hong Lou Meng to Chapter 98 and tell me how the last words of Daiyu are translated in English? It is "Baoyu! Baoyu! Ni hao ..." in Chinese and I am quite curious about the translation.

Thanks in advance for your help.

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Trooper, you should try Ovid's Metamorphoses. They're great.

Skylee, I don't have the book with me now, but I'll let you know. I'm curious myself, too.

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Skylee, in English she says "Baoyu, Baoyu, how could you..."

What do you think of that translation?

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I'm reading a book called Chinese Lives : An Oral History of Contemporary China. It's a neat glimpse into the private lives of a variety of people, written in the mid 80's.

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skylee

Lu, I think the Chinese version "ni hao ..." gives me much room of imagination of what she is trying to say (though definitely not hello). I think the English version is as good as a translation can be (it doesn't convey enough hatred though, as "hao" could be taken for 反话 meaning disagreement/dissatisfaction).

Thanks a lot for replying.

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skylee

I have not read any of 柏楊's books yet, but I have always intended to read his 中國人史綱, which I've heard is very good.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Still reading the Hongloumeng, and Dostoyevski's The Karamazov Brothers. Liked Dostojevski it at first, then detested it more and more as it dragged on and on and became very boring, but now I'm near the end and it's getting more interesting again. I don't think the old Russian authors are really my thing, though. As Tolstoy in War and Peace, Dostoyevski is actually writing two books at the same time, which doesn't do good to either. IMHO He should have written one book about his ideas on faith and christianity, and one murder story.

Also reading 韩少功 Han Shaogong's 马桥词典 Maqiao cidian, I'm leaving for Taiwan in about four weeks and I don't expect to finish it before then, but in the meantime it's good practice.

Just finished a Dutch book called Een stad van boeren (A city of farmers), very good book about the migrants in the Chinese cities, where they come from, what they do, why they leave, what their life in the city is like. Very good.

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i have just finished reading "圍城" written by 錢鍾書 and cannot understand why people rave about it

哎, 怎能這樣說.

it's one of the best novels i read. It goes deep into studying human nature and the loss of intellectual, well-written, with huge sense of humour. No wonder why it always appears on the complied list of the best novels in century, rated by different publications and scholars.

Question: has anyone read the book The Ugly Chinaman and the Crisis of Chinese Culture by Po Yang, and have an opinion on it to share?

I finished reading The Ugly Chinese when i was young. A piece of critcal study in the nature of distorted chinese living today. It's worth reading to see how chinese views themselve.

In fact, there're a few highly famous writers that earned their reputation by criticisming chinese nature, including the god-like type 魯迅, 陶傑, 龍應台. While 魯迅 is outdated to me, i personally prefer to read books from the latter two writers. It may be a challenging read to chinese learners but it's worth reading.

I'm reading a book called Chinese Lives : An Oral History of Contemporary China. It's a neat glimpse into the private lives of a variety of people, written in the mid 80's

Oxford published a few oral china history books, in english and chinese, that covers a few major events and figures in hongkong, macao and mainland china. They touch my heart. I feel like walking together with all the contributors, to witness the history by sharing their happiness and sorrow.

I've just finished Soul Mountain by Gao Xingjian (in English). I don't think I'll attempt the Chinese version any time soon! I've moved onto an anthology of classic short stories by various writers.

Is it really worth a nobel prize? I bought it , spent one day on reading a few pages, and left it in my bookselves for more than a year.

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skylee
哎, 怎能這樣說.

當然我可以這樣說,因為我看過了,個人意見嘛 ... 8)

I agree it has a great sense of humour (bordering on sarcasm). And I do like that character 趙辛楣. I find it over-rated, though ...

I have just finished 張愛玲's 對照記. If I can't find another book to read, I might have to go back to 鹿鼎記, or start re-reading Henry James' "The American".

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wushijiao

I just finished "The Bridegroom" by Ha Jin. As usual, it was a good book (of short stories), mixing dark humor, tales of apathy towards justice, revenge, while at the same time having a bright "joie de vivre" of sorts. Amazing.

I'm also reading Wang Shuo's "我是你爸爸", which is also pretty funny.

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