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Errant Pinkies

Robert Macfarlane, 1 June 2000

Waiting 
by Ha Jin.
Heinemann, 308 pp., £10, May 2000, 0 434 00914 8
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... about life, love and death in a Hunanese village during the Cultural Revolution; translated by Gladys Yang, it proved extremely popular in America and was made into a successful film. Along with Nien Cheng’s memoir Life and Death in Shanghai, it prepared the ground for Jung Chang’s Wild Swans (1993), an epic of mass delusion and mass hardship. The ...

Father Bosco to Africa

Walter Nash, 5 February 1987

The Red Men 
by Patrick McGinley.
Cape, 304 pp., £10.95, January 1987, 0 224 02386 1
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Chat Show 
by Terence de Vere White.
Gollancz, 207 pp., £9.95, January 1987, 0 575 03910 8
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Leaden Wings 
by Zhang Jie, translated by Gladys Yang.
Virgo, 180 pp., £9.95, January 1987, 0 86068 759 7
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Russian Novel 
by Edward Kuznetsov, translated by Jennifer Bradshaw.
Quartet, 285 pp., £12.95, January 1987, 0 7043 2522 5
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Richard Robertovich 
by Mark Frankland.
Murray, 216 pp., £9.95, January 1987, 0 7195 4330 4
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... Patrick McGinley’s pastoral parable, The Red Men, begins with Gulban Heron, rural overlord of a hotel, a shop and four sons. There is dark-haired Jack, capable, ruthless, dissolute, his father’s favourite, and there are three carrot-polled losers, the red men of the title: Cookie, a jaded man of letters, typically apt to give life a literary form and content; cynical Joey, with his fire-scarred face, who mistrusts the emotions and gives his mind to geology and shopkeeping; and Father Bosco, with his fire-damped soul, reminiscently plagued by lust and distressed by the loneliness of his calling ...

Homer Inc

Edward Luttwak, 23 February 2012

The Iliad by Homer 
translated by Stephen Mitchell.
Weidenfeld, 463 pp., £25, October 2011, 978 0 297 85973 4
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... form. Until then, China’s only translation from the Greek had been in prose, by the celebrated Yang Xianyi, who with his wife, Gladys Taylor, translated many Chinese classics into English as he lived through the hellish vicissitudes of China from 1940 till his death in 2009, including his and his wife’s separate ...

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