Friday, March 4, 2011

Book Review: Dream of Red Mansions

One of the greatest masterpieces of literature, reading this was an incredible experience. Poignant, funny, metaphysical, tragic, allegorical, psychologically profound, and highly entertaining, it bridges the worlds of heaven and earth, dreams and "reality," and is a truly astonishing achievement. Reading does not get any better than this--it really is up there with Don Quixote, The Divine Comedy, War and Peace, Shakespeare, and anything else you might name. As one Western scholar on the work noted, to "appreciate its position in Chinese culture, we must imagine a work with the critical cachet ofJames Joyce's Ulysses with the popular appeal of Margaret Mitchell's Gone With the Wind – and twice as long as the two combined"...There is an excellent review here ( if you are interested (it's listed in an alternate translation as "Story of the Stone").

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