Black Snow

Liu Heng (Author) Howard Goldblatt (Translator)


In 1989 a remarkable film, Ju Dou, banned in China for depicting adultery, was released to worldwide acclaim and nominated for an Academy Award. The film was adapted from the first novel by Liu Heng, one of China's most important young writers. Black Snow is Liu Heng's second novel, and it will prove to be equally unsettling. Li Huiquan returns to Beijing after serving a three-year sentence in a prison labor camp for his involvement in a juvenile street fight. Both his foster parents, who raised him after he was discovered abandoned in a train station, are dead, and Huiquan is left with nothing but his mother's small life's savings and the attentions of his Auntie Luo, who arranges for his livelihood. Huiquan agrees, with his aunt's urgings, to sell clothing from a peddler's cart. It is joyless, tiring work, and Huiquan can barely contain his disdain for the crowds of people eager to snatch up foreign goods. At night, Huiquan frequents a karaoke bar, where he meets a bearded stranger with connections to the shady world of the black market, a world Huiquan finds both seductive and repulsive. He also meets Zhao Yaqiu, a naive and silly young singer who becomes the object of his overwhelming obsession and the focus of his previously diffuse anxiety. As his surroundings turn increasingly bleak and meaningless, Huiquan's attraction to Yaqiu, who, in his mind, may provide the only connection to the society around him, grows dangerously strong. Black Snow is a stunning psychological portrait of a dissatisfied and emotionally illiterate young man's desperate search for meaning and companionship in the gray world under totalitarianism. It combines the existential angst of writers such as Camusand Sartre with the disaffection of the American urban novels of the 1980s. Liu Heng's voice is one of the first of his generation to be heard outside of China, and this novel offers an extraordinary glimpse into the psyche and life-style of the young generation in contemporary Be

Product Details

$15.00  $13.80
Grove Press
Publish Date
April 08, 1994
5.48 X 0.73 X 8.23 inches | 0.69 pounds
BISAC Categories:

Earn by promoting books

Earn money by sharing your favorite books through our Affiliate program.

Become an affiliate