Mo Yan

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As Mo's first book in English translation since his 2012 Nobel win (it was originally published in 2009 in China), this should move briskly off the shelves. Readers familiar with the author's work will appreciate his sly references to past titles, including "red sorghum" and Gong Li, while newbies will be inspired to explore more of what they've been missing. [See Prepub Alert, 7/21/14.]

Sandalwood Death

An opera singer, who is a leader of the Boxer Rebellion, is put to an excruciating death in this historical novel...

Sandalwood Death: A Novel

In the wake of Mo's Nobel win, his upcoming titles will garner greater attention. However, demand for Death might prove higher than actual readership, not because of a lack of quality writing but for its power to conjure the most heinous scenes of torturous death. Mo's "Author's Note" warns at book's end, "This novel of mine will likely not be a favorite of readers of western literature, especially in highbrow circles […] my novel will be appreciated only by readers who have an affinity with the common man." Diligent readers will also need to detach themselves from the gruesome machinations of Mo's "common man" to reach the final pages.

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