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Jin Yong novels


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Jin Yong's novels have gained popularity over the years in Mainland and Taiwan. But over time I gradually dislike it. Here are the reasons:

(1) Jin Yong kept revising his writing. And I heard that he just tried to rewrite some again. This seems to be his 4th revised version. Many interesting figures in the original version have disappeared.

(2) Maybe Jin Yong wants to upgrade his writing and now prints his novels with fancy papers and nice covers which make them look like physics text book rather than Kung Fu novels.

But where and when did we usually read Jin Yong's books in High School years?

For me it was the stuff for killing time in toilet, and a good read under the mattress with flashlight during bedtime or a lesiure read in the boring chemistry class.

But since they are so bulky now, how can the readers hold them for long time or hide/read them without others noticing?

I think the 8-pages 1 Chapter version that was sold in the '60s for 30 cents was the best edition.

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  • 1 year later...
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Okay, all the Jin Yong fans, the long awaited new versions of Jin's rewritten novels are finallly coming out during the Chinese New Year holiday:


It seems that the greatest change is in 倚天屠龍記

張無忌 may marry 3 of the 4 girls he fell in love.

The current version is that he married two girls. The older early'70 version that I read was he married only one girl.

But did Jin Yong really think that polygamy is fun?

However, such arrangement conforms more closely to the social standard practised at that time. Anyway, it seems Jin turns his martial art novels gradually into love stories :clap

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Why the character of 張無忌 is interesting is that he is the No. 1 in the martial arts world, an excellent doctor, young and good looking, and could snatch the throne if he chooses to (actually he is not cunning enough), but yet he is notoriously undecisive in dealing with his love life. Four girls and he doesn't know how to choose!! At the end there are only two left (the other two have left him) and still he can't choose (oh but we all know that he loves the Mongolian princess more :wink: ).

Margaret Ng (吳靄儀) says basically he is a doctor and has too kind a heart, and his personality prevents him from being great, despite all his capabilities.

And who cares about the new versions? I am quite contended with the old versions with all their faults.

Here's what Margaret Ng says -










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I guess the reasons why Jin Yong is able to rewrite his works while others cannot because:

(1) Jin lives longer than most other writers;

(2) Jin is filthy rich (which is quite against the norm that Chinese writers are usually poor);

(3) Jin tries to rewrite hsi work in a more politically correct way to suit most Chinese readers (i.e. His early works in late 1950s adopted a Marxist view which depicted bandit Li ZhiCheng as a revolutionary hero);

(4) Since most of the changes are focused on man-woman relationship, I guess Jin has different perspective on love when he grows older;


(5) Since almost everyone has read his books, the only way to attract readers to read them again is to make drastic changes (at least I may buy the new versions even though I have read them each at least 3 or 4 times).

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  • 10 months later...
(5) Since almost everyone has read his books, the only way to attract readers to read them again is to make drastic changes (at least I may buy the new versions even though I have read them each at least 3 or 4 times).
He could also write new ones. That would be a better use of his time, imho.
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  • 11 years later...

(Brushing off the dust on this old topic)


Looks like the English translation of Jin Yong's "Condor Trilogy"  is soon to be published - or should I better say 'start being published'. This article has some interesting information and good links. 

The "Lord of the Rings" of Chinese literature is finally being translated into English


There are several other threads in this Forum mentioning Jin Yong (Louis Cha), here are a couple 

Wuxia (aka martial art or kungfu) novels by Louis Cha

Best kung fu novel ever?





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