Wednesday, 21 October 2009
January 2009 - Book 3
Book no 3 - Mao's Last Dancer by Li Cunxin
I am not a biography or autobiography reader. I have read and enjoyed a few, but they are not my chosen poison.I like the escape of fiction. But some true stories are certainly larger than fiction. This is one of those, and so well told.
The book tells the story of a dirt poor Chinese boy that gets chosen to go to the elite state ballet school - without ever having seen a ballet or know what it is about. It provides him with the opportunity to escape the hardships so graphically described and the chance to have a better future. In time he becomes a star and see the world. But he also realizes how he has been brainwashed to believe the communist principles forced down with the pirouettes.
The book is well written and holds the attention although it is a long read. I found life in communist China fascinating and the portrial of the west through his eyes is just amazing to read.
Cat's opinion: A well deserved 8/10